Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects [LOHA]

Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects [LOHA]

Los Angeles, CA


LAXART Gallery

For the new home of LAXART, Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects adapted a building originally designed for a recording studio to create an art gallery that responds dynamically to the innovative and experimental programming of this seminal Los Angeles contemporary art space.

Located on a lively boulevard in Hollywood’s creative hub, the studio was built by RCA Victor in 1928. Once known as the best recording facility in Los Angeles, the building was the backdrop to many groundbreaking pop recordings of the 1950s and 60s, including Elvis Presley, Stevie Wonder, The Beach Boys, Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby, and Jimi Hendrix.

Responding to the client’s wish to retain as much of the original building as possible to preserve the context of this location and its significance in popular music, LOHA focused on uncovering the beauty of the original spaces. LOHA’s design made use of the skylights and original floor plan to create highly workable, yet beautiful, gallery spaces; and turned the recording studio’s lofted control room, with its large window into the main space, into the new home of Slanguage Studio, LAXART’s education program in-residence. By exposing the wooden roof beams, brick walls, and worn-in concrete floors, LOHA created a rich, textured background to enhance a variety of activities and spatial configurations.

Completed in time for LAXART’s 10th anniversary, LOHA designed the gallery as a series of flexible spaces at a variety of scales that allow for exhibitions, performances, discussions, and audience interaction with art and artists. This approach creates a platform for LAXART to continue reinventing itself and respond to the needs of curators and artists working in all media. In tandem with a phasing strategy that accommodates future expansion, LOHA created a new kind of working gallery that can evolve over time while serving as an experimental testing ground for unconventional ideas.

This new gallery space for LAXART deepens LOHA’s body of work in reinventing and adapting existing structures, including airport hangers and former movie theatres, towards creating new kinds of cultural space.

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Status: Built
Location: Los Angeles, CA, US
Additional Credits: Photography: Lawrence Anderson