Architectural Home Design Books

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The Libbey stables in Ojai are among the 23 historic
The Libbey stables in Ojai are among the 23 historic buildings featured in the new book, "Ojai by Design." Wallace Neff and Austin Pierpont were the architects for the stables. The book seeks to showcase the area’s vibrant architectural history through photographs and essays documenting 23 historic buildings.   CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/GRAHAM DUNN>FullscreenJ.R. Davidson was the architect for the Gabriele Vigeveno
J.R. Davidson was the architect for the Gabriele Vigeveno residence in Ojai. The building is featured in the new book, "Ojai by Design."  CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/DAWN ROSA>FullscreenJ. Cleveland Cady was the architect for the Ojai Presbyterian
J. Cleveland Cady was the architect for the Ojai Presbyterian Church, one of the buildings featured in "Ojai by Design."  CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/DAWN ROSA>FullscreenCharles Moore was the architect for the Pine Cottage
Charles Moore was the architect for the Pine Cottage addition. Now the library of the Krishnamurti Foundation of America, the building is featured in the new book, "Ojai by Design."  CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/DAWN ROSA>Fullscreen

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    The cover of "Ojai by Design" features the Pratt residence. Greene and Greene was the architectural firm that designed this building.(Photo: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/GRAHAM DUNN)

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    For more than a century, Ojai has attracted a wealth of architectural beauty and influence that far surpasses its size.

    Famous architects, East Coast gentry and visionary local citizens have all had a hand in molding the city’s striking urban landscape. From the Mission Revival-style downtown to elegant Craftsman homes to post-modern spiritual centers, Ojai is a melting pot of brick-and-mortar creations.

    A new book, “Ojai by Design: Fine Architecture of the Ojai Valley,” seeks to showcase the area’s vibrant architectural history through photographs and essays documenting 23 historic buildings. The book is sponsored by the Ojai Arts Commission and is planned to be the first in a series about art in the Ojai region. A book-signing is planned for Saturday at the Ojai Valley Museum.

    “We decided, because it’s so immensely visible and really a permanent part of our culture, that architecture would be the best thing to start with,” said Ojai Arts Commission Chair Michael Addison, who came up with the idea for the book. “The architectural variety and the quality is really amazing for a town of this size.”

    Read more: Cafe Society: Everything’s comin’ up Pixie tangerines in Ojai

    The book spans more than 100 years of Ojai’s history, beginning with the town’s first Presbyterian church built in the late 1800s and continuing through to 1978 with construction of Pine Cottage, the former residence of noted philosopher J. Krishnamurti, now the library at Ojai’s Krishnamurti Educational Center.

    In between, photographs and text tell the story of the town’s physical transformation in 1917 at the hands of glass magnate Edward Drummond Libbey, who hired San Diego architect Richard Requa to redesign the downtown.

    The resulting Mission Revival-style post office tower, arcade and pergola set the architectural tone for many of Ojai’s subsequent buildings and later inspired other cities such as Santa Barbara and San Clemente to follow suit, said the book’s author, local historian Craig Walker.

    Other buildings featured in the book include private residences rarely seen by the public, and edifices designed by the renowned architectural firm Greene and Greene, modernist architect Richard Neutra, Hearst Castle designer Julia Morgan and Santa Barbara architect George Washington Smith.

    “We wanted to get a variety of different styles,” said Walker, who worked on the book with artist and arts commissioner Bobbi Balderman, local journalist Mark Lewis and Ojai artist Carlos Grasso. “I think by square mile, you’d be hard-pressed to find a community with such a variety of works of architecture.”

    Walker said one of his favorite architects in the book is Paul Revere Williams, who designed four buildings in Ojai. Born in Los Angeles in 1894, Williams became the first African-American member of the American Institute of Architects.

    “He overcame the odds. He was a famous architect back in the days when African Americans just weren’t in the field of architecture,” Walker said. “So his personal journey I found interesting, as well as the incredible beauty of his architecture.”

    Addison said he expects the book will appeal to Ojai residents, architecture buffs and visitors alike.

    “Our hope and our expectation is that visitors to Ojai, too, will see it as a wonderful memento of their exploration of the beauties of Ojai,” he said.

     

    If you go

    What: Book-signing party for “Ojai by Design”

    When: 5-7 p.m. Saturday

    Where: Ojai Valley Museum, 130 W. Ojai Ave., Ojai

    Cost: Free. Books are $29.95 and will be available for purchase at the Ojai Valley Museum and at Ojai City Hall, 401 S. Ventura St., Ojai.

    Information: 640-1390 or www.ojaivalleymuseum.org

    Source : http://www.vcstar.com/story/news/local/2018/01/25/new-book-showcases-ojais-architectural-treasures/1066002001/

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