Most people think the proud tradition of modernist architecture in California never caught on north of the San Fernando Valley. "Northern California Modernism" is a long overdue corrective to this perception, prevalent among historians and aficionados alike. More than just a history of architectural modernism in the Bay Area and environs, this book details the debate that raged around the idea of modernism in an area with an already identifiable stylistic tradition. This debate drew in some of the greats of twentieth century architecture and criticism: Frank Lloyd Wright, Lewis Mumford, Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, and more. The way this debate tipped, toward favoring the "Bay Region Style" over that of a struggling young modernism, goes a great way to explain why the hundreds of important projects around the Bay Area, many still standing, are still virtually unknown. With hundreds of amazing photos that will go along way to reconstructing the legacy of this movement, "Northern California Modernism" is an important addition to the literature of modernism and Bay Area architecture.
Pierluigi Serraino is an architect and writer who has devoted himself to research this topic for the pastseveral years, interviewing as many of the surviving architects of the era as he could find.