There is a building a few blocks away from my home. It captivates me. I can’t take my eyes off of it.
Since I moved to LA in 2007, I regard The City National Plaza (AKA The Arco Towers) as a statuesque, beautifully dressed superstar and I just stand there and gawk. For years.
Although it was not designed by Mies van der Rohe (Albert C. Martin & Associates is the architect), It is most definitely an homage. The profile is Modernist. The use of The Golden Triangle (Φ) ensures that the ratios are impeccable. Simply put, it’s fucking gorgeous.
What Have We Learned Today?
There are very good reasons to edit, revise, and remake. However, do not do so simply because you can.
I learned a lot from this building. It serves as a constant reminder to me to keep an eye on how design functions as well as how it looks.
Considered one of the most perfect statements of his architectural approach, the upper pavilion is a precise composition of monumental steel columns and a cantilevered (overhanging) roof plane with a glass enclosure. The simple square glass pavilion is a powerful expression of his ideas about flexible interior space, defined by transparent walls and supported by an external structural frame. Art installations by Ulrich Rückriem (1998) or Jenny Holzer, as much as exhibitions on the work of Renzo Piano or Rem Koolhaas have demonstrated the exceptional possibilities of this space.
The glass pavilion is a relatively small portion of the overall building, serving as a symbolic architectural entry point and monumental gallery for temporary exhibits. A large podium building below the pavilion accommodates most of the museum’s total built area with conventional white-walled art gallery spaces and support functions. A large window running along all the West facade opens these spaces up to the large sculpture garden which is part of the podium building.
And Then This Happened.
The North Tower, known as the Paul Hastings Tower, underwent renovations. The main client of the building, the international law firm Paul Hastings decided this stunner needed plastic surgery. And they did this: