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Help Bring R.M. Schindler Documentary to the Screen
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Modmom1



Joined: 03 Dec 2017
Posts: 110

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2019 7:36 pm    Post subject: Help Bring R.M. Schindler Documentary to the Screen Reply with quote

I thought chatters might be interested in this film on R.M. Schindler:

"The first feature-length documentary about the life and works of R. M. Schindler, the most innovative and the least understood of all the pioneers of modern architecture. The film affirms the singular genius of one man, and the eternal challenge every artist faces to stay true to their vision in an effort to leave a lasting impact. The majority of the filmmaking process has been completed. Now, we need your help to gather the funds to finish it.


Short Summary

Austrian-born and educated, R. M. Schindler(RMS) lived and worked in Los Angeles in the early twentieth century. He changed forever the architectural landscape of Los Angeles and laid the foundation for what now is considered California lifestyle of indoor-outdoor living, impacting world architecture as a whole for years to come and to this day. His life story is one of passion for art and architecture and one of emigration to foreign lands.

The house Schindler built for his family and another couple on Kings Road, West Hollywood in 1922, is now a museum: considered the first modern house built anywhere in the world. It was an architectural and social experiment, challenging the precepts of the nuclear family. It marked the birth of counter culture in America, dealing with such issues as feminism, gender equality, communal living. It was a gathering place for artists, radicals and a cradle for modern architecture.

Schindler transformed the way we see space and how we use it. His architecture grew from inside-out directly responding to the lifestyle of its occupants; it elevated their everyday existence by bringing it into harmony with nature. A true original, Schindler, never succumbed to the trends of the day. He experimented and invented over a period of 30 years: suffering the ups and downs of a creative genius, forging his own vision.

Artistic Approach

The film follows Schindler’s journey from Vienna through Chicago and on to Los Angeles, observing where possible through his own camera lens and in his own words. His story is told through narration, interviews, correspondence, drawings, plans and photos. Schindler’s theoretical writings form the core of the film in order to explain his philosophy. Actors narrate the voices of R.M. Schindler, Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, Ester McCoy, Ellen Janson to name a few.

Featured in the film are 24 interviews with architects, architectural historians, members of the Schindler family, owners of Schindler designed houses. Most notable among the interviewed are: Frank Gehry, Thomas Mayne, Wolf Prix, Steven Holl, Ray Kappe, Mark Mack, prof. Judith Sheine, prof. August Sarnitz, prof. Thomas Hines, Christoph Thun-Hohenstein, Director MAK Museum in Vienna and Robert Sweeney, Director Friends of Schindler House in Los Angeles.

We have already filmed many locations in Vienna, Chicago and Los Angeles. A key intent of this film is to show how Schindlerʼs master works have stood the test of the time. Featured in the film are 20 buildings designed by R.M. Schindler as well as several designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra."



Info below:


https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/r-m-schindler-space-architect?utm_campaign=contribution_receipt&utm_content=receipt-campaign_link&utm_medium=email&utm_source=lifecycle#/
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peterm



Joined: 13 Mar 2008
Posts: 6091
Location: Chicago, Il.---Oskaloosa, Ia.

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Schindler is like a god to me. The imagination, the humanity, the richness of the spaces built from the cheapest materials, his expression of structure. His bohemian nature.

His politics, and those of his clients. I can’t wait to see this film!
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18182
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2019 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heh-heh---me too. Every architect is unique; paraphrasing Wright, Schindler could be said to be "more unique." (Cypress wood: "eternal"; swamp cypress: "more eternal !")

Focussing on how his buildings have stood the test of time doesn't bode well for me, however; Schindler's experiments were considerably more fragile than Wright's, I think.
Will we be treated to views of lumpy latter-day stucco at the Walker house, once so pristinely smooth, or shredding and shedding asphalt-paper siding at DeKeyser ?

(Actually, a friend brought home interior photos taken at Walker, recently; virtually all of the gum-leaf-tinted casework seems perfectly intact. Heart-warming . . .)

Finally, why gild the lily with hyperbole ? "The house Schindler built for his family and another couple on Kings Road, West Hollywood in 1922, is now a museum: considered
the first modern house built anywhere in the world."

Really ? Anyway, RMS is as long overdue for documentation on film as was John Howe. Hooray, and bring it on !

S
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peterm



Joined: 13 Mar 2008
Posts: 6091
Location: Chicago, Il.---Oskaloosa, Ia.

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2019 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it's an argument worth taking seriously. Do we really see Wright's early 1920s California textile block houses as "modern"? And look at the other European modernists to see what they had actually built by 1921-1922. There were ideas on paper, but nothing realized that was as radical as Kings Road. And Wright didn't catch up to Schindler's single story, slab floor, flat roof house until the mid 30s.

1924 was the year in Europe when things started to cook, three years after Kings Road.

Rietveld Shroder- 1924
Mies Barcelona Pavilion-1929
Le Corbusier Villa de Lac- 1923


Last edited by peterm on Mon Nov 11, 2019 11:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
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Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2019 11:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mm. Okay. Maybe Kings Road is, among other things, deconstructed Greene & Greene ? An urbane agrarian outbuilding ? Essay in masonry and wood, like every building of substance since the Flood ? A modest yet radical Constructivist manifesto . . .?

S
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Roderick Grant



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
Posts: 9533

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2019 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Schindler-Chase, Pueblo Ribera, Lovell Beach ... those 3 masterpieces alone should ensure RMS's permanent status as one of the masters of 20th century architecture.

"Modern" as an "ism" I have never liked. Stylistically, architecture changes with the wind. So it was with RMS and all the stylistically similar architects in Europe, similar to his work in the 30s more than 20s or 40s. Names like Prairie, Usonian, Deco, MCM ... even Moderne, bring to mind precise examples, while Modern just means today. Architects are always chasing Modern.

Nevertheless, and semantics aside, Schindler-Chase anticipated what FLW was to do a decade later in Madison.
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
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Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2019 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes---I've been guilty of the use of that catch-all term. Word definitions are, like so much else, subject to evolution over time ? Or maybe the problem with
"modernism" is that it is, as you say, so vague---an umbrella covering a large and varied group of modes and styles (if that isn't another fraught term) . . .

S
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18182
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2019 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a yummy and useful page brought to our attention by today's edition (issue 175) of the Wright Society newsletter:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/r-m-schindler-space-architect?utm_campaign=Wright%2BSociety&utm_content=receipt-campaign_link&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Wright_Society_175#/

Images of the Kings Road house (Shindler-Chase) head two items in todays issue; here's the second one:

https://www.kcet.org/shows/lost-la/the-future-fulfilled-modernisms-effect-on-the-california-we-know-today?utm_campaign=Wright%2BSociety&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Wright_Society_175

New images, and much more. Thanks, Eric O'Malley and PrairieMod . . .!

SDR
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Roderick Grant



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2019 12:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did a little checking of work from 1887 to 1933 through the first scheme for Willey. To the extent that a flat roof is an essential measure of so-called Modernism, FLW designed about 30 to 40 houses, over 20 built, with flat roofs. Some of his earliest unbuilt attempts -- Bock, Brown (earliest concrete block house), Esbenshade -- may have run up against strong resistance from clients used to pitched roofs. But all of them, built or unbuilt, into the 1920s, were there on file for RMS to see. S-C may have been the first pure expression of what came to be called International, but there was definitely inspiration.

While flat-roofed non-residential buildings have always been common, two of FLW's pre-International buildings -- Unity Temple and Yahara -- must have been revelations for RMS, Gropius, Corbu and rest. (Yahara is included in Wasmuth.)
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2019 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The only connection in that summary that I might question is this statement: "S-C may have been the first pure expression of what came to be called International, but there was definitely inspiration."

Has anyone equated the Kings Road house with International Style modernism ? Or do I misunderstand ?

S
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Roderick Grant



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2019 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a matter of movement. The spaces of S-C are dynamic, not unlike the best of the Internationalists. (Ya gotta visit it in person to fully appreciate its dynamics.) It is primarily the difference of materials that differentiate it from the European movement. S-C is as it is mostly because RMS had extremely limited funds to work with. It's a sort of 'naked' Modernist house ... or at least scantily clad. Once he had established himself, he moved on to the white stucco of the 30s. Meanwhile, Unity Temple and Yahara were more instrumental in the development of the European aesthetic than any of FLW's or RMS's houses.

With Van Dekker in 1939, RMS started to move away from International and, perhaps, a bit more in the direction of FLW.
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SDR



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2019 1:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of the houses shown in the film trailer, Oliver is the one I know least; the main space is a complete surprise.

I don't have every Schindler book---but those I have do not show this dramatic living room with its arching ceiling; familiar
street views give no hint of this interior form---until now, and the newly announced film. Only a view of the garden side of
the house, in Gebhard's early monograph, reveals the exterior form that corresponds to the newly-revealed interior . . .








. .




© 2019, Valentina Ganeva



Black and white images © 1980 by David Gebhard and Peregrine Smith, Inc

Color photos by Joachim Schumacher, Essen; color rendering, Architectural Drawing Collection, University Art Museum, University of California Santa Barbara; both © 1999 Benedikt Taschen Verlag GmbH
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SDR



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those BIG pieces of glass beneath (and framelessly contacting) the ballooning ceiling are miraculous---and this is early: 1933 . . .

The goings-on above head height are really predictive of the work to come, all the way to the post-war period ?

S
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2019 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another shot of the living room "furnitecture"---the most-often-published view of the house, perhaps---here an uncredited
photo on the Schindler page at North Carolina Modern . . .




Among other notables, Schindler's 45-degree base "shoe" at the floor---which does not seem to be carpeted. Wright drew
this base in some early work . . .

The fireplace opening is not yet reduced, in this image.

S
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18182
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the same year that Schindler built this house, another Wright colleague made a summer house for himself in Japan.

https://www.architecture.com/image-library/ribapix/gallery-product/poster/summer-residence-designed-for-his-own-use-by-antonin-raymond-karuizawa-corner-of-the-open-plan-livin/posterid/RIBA74410.html

https://www.residentialdesignmagazine.com/aia-cran-notes-wright-symposium/

S
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