An LA Treasure – Neutra’s Plywood Model Demonstration House

Sep 13, 2010 by Lisa Newton

Los Angeles is fortunate to be home to several world renowned architects and their finished structures. Frank Lloyd Wright, S. Charles Lee, Rudolf Schindler, Raymond Kappe, and John Byers, just to name a few.

But, particular to the Southern California area, one architect’s name stands out; Richard Neutra. Between 1927 and 1969, Neutra’s prodigious output resulted in more than 300 houses that he designed and built in California.

One of Neutra’s houses is located at 427 Beloit Street. It’s called the “Plywood Model Demonstration House.” In 1936, at the California House and Garden Exhibition, sponsored by the Los Angeles Building Center, Neutra, who loved a good challenge, entered the contest:

The Exhibition drew large crowds, partly due to the organizers raffling all of the houses entered to a lucky Exhibit visitor. Thus, lucky winners only had to buy a lot and move the house.

Because of the house’s “light light metal frame and its plywood panels held in place by metal strips and other industrial prefabricated parts, it was easily disassembled and reassembled.” Source: Richard Neutra and the search for modern architecture: a biography and history

Click the photo for a larger view.

The raffle winner of the 1565 square foot Plywood Model Demonstration House chose to move it to Westwood and soon after, the house was sold to architect Maynard Lyndon.

A few years later, William Brice, son of actress Fanny Brice, bought the house and moved it to its current location on Beloit Street.

It’s amazing the little treasures you can find while Travelin’ Local if you know where to look.

I would like to extent my thanks to Southern California Architectural History for the loan of the historical photos. This story is one that’s near and dear to all who love good living and style.

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Architecture, Culture, Family, SoCal, Westwood

One Response to “An LA Treasure – Neutra’s Plywood Model Demonstration House”

  1. Eco Homes says:

    All of us have to find keep searching for solutions to help save our planet. Really like hearing about this.

    [Reply]

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