Metropolis: Los Angeles (Digital Download)

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A hybrid architecture, design and culture show aimed at viewers interested in buildings and aesthetics, METROPOLIS: is a 30-minute guide to the style of some of the most recognisable places in the world.

Hosted by passionate architecture and design expert Charlie Luxton, METROPOLIS LOS ANGELES charts the rise of a city founded oil, and one which grew to become one of the richest and most famous in the world. This is a place where dreams come true and anything is possible – and that includes the architecture.  Nowhere else on this planet is the motor car so important, and the buildings reflect this. During the early to middle of the 20th Century, buildings were the first to be constructed with the motor car in mind. For this reason, Charlie takes a journey along Wilshire Boulevard, from the heart of the city to the ocean, detouring to take in the city’s most important and influential buildings. From the classic Art Deco designs of the 1920s and 30s, right up to the present day, the car is king in LA.  Charlie learns that LA’s unique architectural legacy stemmed from a freedom afforded no-where else on earth. In many ways, this was a city where anything goes, and did. Here, revolutionary ideas were tried and tested with spectacular results.  Featuring contributions from the Art Deco Society to architectural experts, renowned authors and established designers, METROPOLIS Los Angeles uncovers a sweet shop of architectural classics, inspired by the wonders of the modern world.  America has always been associated with Art Deco, so Charlie goes to explore a classic, No1 Bunker Hill where he meets John Thomas from the LA Art Deco Society. Not only a building, this mighty structure is a work of art, taking inspiration from world events such as the discovery of the Pyramids and African Safaris.  LA’s modernist architecture movement started soon after, and the centre was a picturesque corner of LA called Silverlake. Here, renowned architects such as Richard Neutra learned to harness the favourable year-round weather, creating new Modernist movement.  Although architectural styles and influences changed from decade to decade, at no time did this become more dramatic than the 60s. With Hollywood firmly establishing itself as the movie capital of the world, a sense of vibrancy and humour emerged, epitomised by a style known as ‘Googie’. Taken from the name of a coffee shop frequented by stars such as James Dean, restaurants and bars, while trying to attract custom from passing motorists came up with more and more outlandish designs.  Where Neutra ended, a host of architects like Eichler continued in their quest for the perfect LA home. This meant embracing the sunshine and creating inside/outside living.  Charlie ends his journey back where he started... in downtown. LA’s newest building, the Walt Disney Concert Hall, which was completed in 2003 has been the catalyst for the transformation of a once deprived area of the city and promises to herald the next great chapter of LA architecture.   

Runtime: 26 minutes
FORMAT: H.264 MP4 *Plays on Roku, AppleTV, Playstation, Xbox, Chromecast, Mac, PC, Cell Phone, or Tablet

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