The Case Study House program (1945–1966) was an exceptional, innovative, and unique event in the history of American architecture. Concentrated on the Los Angeles area, the program oversaw the design of 36 prototype homes, and sought to make available plans for modern residences that could be built easily and cheaply during the postwar building boom. This highly experimental program generated designs that would redefine the modern home, and its profound influence on architecture—American and international—was evident during the program’s existence and remains so today. This compact guide includes all the projects featured in our XL edition, with over 150 photos and plans, and a map showing the locations of all the Case Study Houses, including those no longer existing.
Elizabeth A. T. Smith is an art historian, curator, and writer. She has worked as Chief Curator and Deputy Director for programs at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and as curator at MOCA Los Angeles, where she organized Blueprints for Modern Living: History and Legacy of the Case Study Houses. Smith has taught at the University of Southern California and the School of the Art Institute in Chicago.
Peter Gössel runs an agency for museum and exhibition design. He has published TASCHEN monographs on Julius Shulman, R. M. Schindler, John Lautner, and Richard Neutra as well as several architecture titles in the Basic Art Series.
About the series
Each book in TASCHEN’s Basic Architecture series features:
an introduction to the life and work of the architect
the major works in chronological order
information about the clients, architectural preconditions as well as construction problems and resolutions
a list of all the selected works and a map indicating the locations of the best and most famous buildings
approximately 120 illustrations (photographs, sketches, drafts and plans)
"For those passionate about architecture and architects who have shaped the industry, the architect series celebrating TASCHEN's 25 years in the publishing industry is the ultimate inspiration tool. ... Written by different authors, each book is simple to read yet still gives a complete understanding of the work of each of the architects in the series."