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John Parkinson’s Iconic Vision
SAH/SCC Lecture & Walking Tour, Downtown LA
Saturday, June 14, 2014

Mark your calendar for Saturday, June 14th, as SAH/SCC explores architect John Parkinson’s legacy in downtown Los Angeles. Stephen Gee, author of the book Iconic Vision: John Parkinson, Architect of Los Angeles (Angel City Press, 2013), will share his research on this important, yet little known, contributor to our built environment. The lecture and book signing will be held at the current home of the Los Angeles Theater Center (LATC), better known historically as the Security National Bank (John Parkinson, 1916).

Attendees will be provided with a four-color self-guided walking tour brochure and will visit the locations on foot after the lecture. Attendees will also be encouraged to stop by the exhibit, “No Further West: The Story of Los Angeles Union Station” at the Los Angeles Central Library. Marilyn Musicant, SAH/SCC member and an organizer of the exhibit, will be on hand to answer questions.

Our hope is for those who are interested to meet up informally at a no-host cocktail hour event at a downtown watering hole at the end of the day to discuss their adventures and observations.

Although Parkinson is best known for his design of Los Angeles City Hall (Parkinson & Parkinson, with John C. Austin and Albert C. Martin, 1926-8) and Bullock’s Wilshire (Parkinson & Parkinson, 1928), he designed dozens of important buildings in downtown Los Angeles. There are still several major intersections where all four (or nearly all) of the corner buildings were designed by this seminal figure.

Joined in practice by his son Donald to form Parkinson & Parkinson (during which time he was most prolific), he also had an earlier partnership with Edwin Bergstrom. After Parkinson’s death in 1935, his son continued to carry on the firm’s architectural traditions and name for 10 more years.

We'll then visit the new exhibit on another iconic Parkinson structure, “No Further West: The Story of Los Angeles Union Station” at the Los Angeles Central Library (Bertram G. Goodhue and Carleton M. Winslow, 1922-26). Marilyn Musicant, SAH/SCC member and an organizer of the exhibit, will be on hand to answer questions.

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