While architect Pierre Koenig designed the Stahl House in the 1950’s, we chose to use it as a site for reasons other than nostalgia. As California emerged from postwar years, its design community made one of America’s most significant contributions to architecture. The radical simplicity of the Stahl House re-affirms the principles of modernism. It’s my belief that those ideals still hold.
Of course, before arriving in southern California, modern architecture emerged in northern Europe as the International Style, which designers like Mies van der Rohe and Eero Saarinen translated into an American idiom. Like the Stahl House, Mies’ Farnsworth House ties the residence to its surroundings. In southern California, the modernist impulse found a true home, with a landscape, a climate and a culture well suited to its aesthetic, as well as its humanistic ideals.