Reconsidering the Spanish Colonial Revival in California
LACMA presents a discussion on California’s Spanish Colonial Revival, as part of its exhibit “Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915-1985.”
William Deverell, Director of the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West, moderates a panel discussion on Spanish Colonial Revival forms, materials, inspirations, and consequences. The discussion draws from the exhibition Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915-1985. Panelists include Los Angeles Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne, entrepreneur Cedd Moses, theater artist Theresa Chavez, and Julianne Polanco, California’s State Historic Preservation Officer.
Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915–1985
This groundbreaking exhibition and accompanying book presents design dialogues between California and Mexico in the 20th Century. Its four main themes –Spanish Colonial Inspiration, Pre-Hispanic Revivals, Folk Art and Craft Traditions, and Modernism– explore how modern and anti-modern design movements defined both locales throughout the twentieth century.
Half of the show’s more than 250 objects represent architecture, conveyed through drawings, photographs, and films to illuminate the unique sense of place that characterized California’s and Mexico’s buildings.
The other major focus is design: furniture, ceramics, metalwork, graphic design, and murals. Placing prominent figures such as Richard Neutra, Luis Barragán, Charles and Ray Eames, and Clara Porset in a new context while also highlighting contributions of less familiar practitioners, this exhibition is the first to examine how interconnections between California and Mexico shaped the material culture of each place, influencing and enhancing how they presented themselves to the wider world.