Pavilion for Japanese Art / LACMA / Bruce Goff and Bart Prince / 1988
Photograph by me, November 2016, 35mm
Whilst in Los Angeles last November I was lucky enough to visit the Pavilion for Japanese Art at the LACMA. I had seen pictures and done a bit of reading on the building prior to seeing it in person, and it definitely blew my expectations out of the water. The retro-future vibe of the late 80's building still holds the same wow factor as I am sure it did when it first opened. The irregular curves and sweeping forms that wrap around cylindrical towers are reminiscent of traditional Japanese architecture, and my favourite aspect of the design. The softness of the colour palette works in harmony with the way in which the building appears to be floating as the exterior walls are non load bearing. Instead within the interior there are huge columns that take the load from the various roof structures.
Walking through the interior was such a dream, the positioning of the windows within the crazy exterior form meant the lighting throughout the different spaces was magical. The use of transparent screens and barriers along side the organic forms also extenuated the marvelous lighting design.
The art inside was also great, however for me, the architecture itself definitely won out.