Rudolf M. Schindler: The Invention of an American Tradition
Marco De Michelis
The severe judgments of Rudolf M. Schindler's architecture by Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson are well known. Hitchcock said of Schindler's work that it revealed an "immense vitality" that seemed in general to lead to "arbitrary and brutal effects."1 Johnson deemed it unworthy of inclusion in the 1932 exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art because it failed to reflect the essential characteristics of the International Style. Schindler himself responded to this slight by proclaiming that his architecture was not reducible to any particular style: "I am not a stylist, not a functionalist, nor any other sloganist. . . . The question of whether a house is really a house is more important to me than the fact that it is made of steel, glass, putty or hot air."2.

In relation to the major trends in twentieth-century international architecture, Schindler has in fact been consigned to the margins. As a result, there is still an inadequate appreciation of the unique qualities of his work, which is marked on the one hand by an effort to establish the predominance of spatial concerns over those relating to construction and tectonics, and on the other hand by a searching investigation of the origins of architectural modernity.

Schindler's decision to leave Vienna for Chicago in February 1914 appears to have been a response to two strong, parallel fascinations of his: one for Adolf Loos, whose legendary stories about his "learning years" in America he had heard while attending the latter's courses in architecture, and the other for Frank Lloyd Wright, whose work he had come to know and admire from illustrations in portfolios published several years earlier in Berlin.3 The young architect took with him five typewritten pages in which he outlined his own "Program" for the renewal of the practice of architecture.4

For Schindler, the entire history of Western architecture was determined by the primacy of problems of construction - the need to ensure the stability of man-made shelters and the need to give plastic form to building materials. The architectural character of the earliest type of house built by humans, "a hollow pile of earth," resulted from the effort of the "formal conquest of material-mass. . . . The vault was not a spatial conception but a material form-work supporting the suspended mass. The decoration was intended to shape the mass, rather than the atmosphere."5

The last stage of this long history could be seen in Otto Wagner's search for a "new style" that would be in keeping with the new materials and building techniques of the machine age. To the young Schindler, Wagner's constructional optimism was still governed by the machine-operated universe - the last expression of man's ancient fear in the face of the threatening reality of the elements - and was inevitably going to be superseded by an entirely new state of freedom, in which modern man could consider the world as the space of his dominion, as a dwelling in which to harmoniously mould his own life. The freedom from the physical limits of materials opened the possibility of conceiving of architectural space as the positive expression of man's needs; domestic intimacy was no longer a "timid retreat" from the natural elements but an extension of the natural environment itself, assuring its inhabitants the "free availability of time and space, of light, of air, and of temperature."6

Fragmentary as they may have been, the ideas that the young Schindler presented were strikingly original. It is clear that they depend to a considerable degree on Gottfried Semper's theories and on Wagner's teachings. But the notion of "space" as the major subject of architectural work cannot simply be traced back to Adolf Loos; at the time, Loos was still years away from formulating his "Raumplan," which in any case was different from Schindler's conception of a re-union between the natural universe and the domestic interior and was based rather on the irreducible polarity between the closed, box-like wrapping of the building and the three-dimensional sequence of interior spaces.

Schindler's thinking was surely affected by Semper's notion of the wall as a woven "space-making" structure and his interpretation of the Roman vault as the expression of a new conception of architectural space. However, as Harry Francis Mallgrave has observed,7 the most crucial influences seem to have been the philosopher Konrad Fiedler, who in 1878 had proposed the centrality of spatial issues as a new way of conceiving of architecture,8 and the art historian August Schmarsow, who had introduced the idea of "spatial feeling" (providing a fundamental tool for a critical-historical approach to architecture) and in 1893 had formulated a definition of architecture that is echoed practically verbatim in Schindler: "Our sense of space [Raumgefühl] and of spatial imagination [Raumphantasie] press toward spatial creation [Raumgestaltung]; they seek their satisfaction in art. We call this art architecture; in plain words, it is the creator of space [Raumgestalterin].9

During his early years in America, Schindler found occasion to further articulate the issues raised in his "Program" of 1912-1913. The most interesting example of this was a series of twelve elaborately prepared lectures, serving as an introduction to architecture, that he delivered in 1916 at the Church School of Design in Chicago. 10 His 112 handwritten pages of lecture notes, now in the Schindler Papers at the University of California, Santa Barbara, constitute the most extensive and elaborate theoretical text by the Vienna-born architect.

The twelve lectures were intended to provide the outlines of a critical approach to architecture. According to Schindler, a conventional academic education provided the ability to imitate any style, but did not give the student any sense of what architecture really was. The consequence of this was the "chaos in architectural production of our time"11 and the degradation of the architectural profession itself.

Echoes from Loos are immediately recognizable in the second lecture, which deals with the relationship between art and architecture. Art, wrote Schindler, has no function. "It is created with no outside purpose in view. It has not to be pleasant, beautiful, moral etc.," it is "out of reach for the masses."12 Here the young architect demonstrates a keen awareness of Loos's famous distinction between art and architecture - the blatant uselessness of the former and the utilitarian ends to which the latter is inevitably subservient.13 It was not long, however, before Schindler was to emerge from the shadow of his master. His goal lay elsewhere, in demonstrating the artistic nature of the architectural enterprise, a notion that was rejected by Loos. To this end, Schindler invoked the classic opposition of content and form: content, which is determined by tradition, through time, and through the development of technique, is seen to be radically extraneous to form, whose only end is that of being form, whose creative process has as its "main point" the "how" and not the "what."14

The crucial themes delineated in the "Program" of 1912-1913 recur in the notes for the third lecture, dealing with the language of architecture. Here Schindler confirms the obsolescence of the traditional assimilation of architectural practice to that of sculpture and the crucial function that space needs to assume as "architectural material," resorting once again to Semper's theory of the origins of architecture and to the distinction proposed there between the "stationary" house and the "moveable" house.15 The former was characterized by massive walls and by the tectonic problems of joining together the different parts, particularly the vertical structures in stone or earth with the wooden covering. The opposite, the moveable house, can be interpreted essentially as a tent made of branches, "all roof," its structure composed of a frame that sustains the perimeter walls, presenting an essential affinity with the spatial thematic of modern architecture.

For Schindler, as for numerous other Europeans who came to the United States in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, America represented the ideal homeland of the Zeitgeist of motion and machinery, an unbounded universe open to the future, the model of a society and a way of life oriented entirely to the present and relieved of the burden of history.

When Schindler sailed into New York on 7 March 1914, the city appeared to him as "an adventure." "The endless rows of windows built up against the sky are, close at hand, quite disappointing to the architect because everything is still rough, only calculated for mass effect - no, generated through mass demand."16 But his dismay at the city's aesthetic deficiencies was soon outweighed by his amazement at the fifty-eight floors of the Woolworth Building, the half-million commuters who passed through the Hudson Terminal Building daily, the lean steel frames of the skyscrapers, and the enormous elevators climbing tirelessly through the bowels of these buildings.

As soon as Schindler arrived in Chicago, with the extraordinary example of Wright's Prairie houses before his eyes, the American landscape took on a radically different meaning for him. It was not so much in large industrial metropolises that the space of American modernity assumed its form, but rather in the boundless stretches of the prairies as well as the deserts of the West, and in the possibilities of reshaping these primordial settings, in the way that the early pioneers had managed to transform the arid, sandy lands into flourishing orange groves and cities, establishing a new and uniquely American tradition. Schindler thus retraced one of the fundamental paths of American colonization and its myth of the frontier.

At the end of the summer of 1915, Schindler travelled to the West and Southwest. He visited San Francisco's Panama Pacific Exposition, as well as the fair in San Diego, where Goodhue's Spanish revival triumphed, and he had his first encounter with the architecture of Irvin Gill. He saw Los Angeles, Denver, Salt Lake City, the mythical landscapes of the West, the Grand Canyon, and finally the desert and high plains of New Mexico, Taos, and Santa Fe.17 The deep impression that Indian pueblo architecture left on him and his unforgettable experiences "among Indians and cowboys," which he wrote about to Richard Neutra,18 can be traced in the numerous photographs and sketches Schindler made during his stay in New Mexico. In a letter to Neutra written a few years later, in late 1920 or early 1921, Schindler's impressions of this trip were at the centre of his sweeping assessment of American architecture: "When I speak of American architecture I must say at once that really there is none. There are a few beginnings but architecture has never been wedded to America, and the few skyscrapers that were thrust upward by the gigantic vitality of the infinite prairies have nothing human about them. The only buildings that testify to the deep feeling for the soil on which they stand are the sun-baked adobe buildings of the first immigrants and their successors - Spanish and Mexican - in the southwest part of the country."19

Schindler's stay in Taos was also the beginning of a project for a large adobe residence for Dr. T.P. Martin that he worked on during the winter of 1915 but which remained unbuilt. Schindler hurriedly sent off drawings, accompanied by a letter in which he explained the reasons behind his design choices: the need to give the building "a low stretched mass of adobe walls, with a rather severe expression outside" so as to be in harmony with the scale of the "vast plains of the West"; the generosity of the interior spaces, especially the large living room laid out on various levels so that the house would not be limited to "a mere shelter, but the frame for a man in which to enjoy life through his culture"; and, especially, the attempt revealed by the choice of the traditional adobe walls "to give it the deepest possible rooting in the soil which has to bear it," without, in this, trying "any old style, even if formerly used on the place. The building has to show that it is conceived within a twentieth-century mentality and that it is to serve a man who is not dressed in an old Spanish uniform."20

It is, above all, with the Log House project, completed in 1918,21 that Schindler once again took up and further examined the question of architecture's original character, beginning with the lesson of Wright's Prairie houses. As Lionel March has noted,22 the passage from the massive adobe walls of the Martin residence to this structure "woven" in wooden trunks reveals an attempt to get beyond any sculptural conception of the architectural product. Yet there is something more: an analogy can be drawn between the completely elemental character of this small house and the archetype of the original hut, presenting itself here in the form of the "moveable house," the house-tent, as opposed to the house-cave evoked by the project for the Martin residence in Taos. The reference to Semper's classification may be even more explicit if we consider, alongside the aforementioned "textile" structure of the walls and the flat covering laid in simple fashion on the perimeter walls and separated from them by a thin strip of clerestory windows, the decision to raise the ground level of the house on a terrace, laying the wooden cross-beams of the floor on three small squared-off rock piles, the largest of which, containing the chimney, traverses the interior space of the house vertically. The "four elements of architecture" described by Semper, beginning with the Caribbean hut exhibited in London in 1851 - the hearth in the middle, the mound as a terrace, the roof on pillars, the vertical enclosure made of straw matting23 - are re-proposed as the basis of an architecture of space and lead back to the tradition of the American frontier house in the prairies of the Midwest.

The fifth lecture of Schindler's course at the Church School had as its subject "the architect." According to Schindler, it was the growing complexity of building problems that led to the rise of the "designing architect," the autonomous creator of his own imaginings, which took shape at the drawing table, far from the mundane routines of the actual building site (to which Schindler himself, as we know, would devote constant attention throughout his career). More Theoretiker than executor, the "designing architect" was a manifestation of the growing contradiction between the two-dimensional representation on the sheet of paper and the three-dimensional reality of architecture in space, with ever increasing importance being assigned to the graphic quality of the drawing and its conceptual autonomy ("Arch.[itect] making good looking drawing = usually bad"24). Here again Loos is of crucial importance to Schindler, who quotes, almost verbatim, an extraordinary passage in which the former declares himself to be "your dwelling maestro,"25 emphasizing that the architect's task was to "know needs of people, not only today's needs, but shall educate it to its future needs. His task to shape the life of mankind. . . . His real working material is mankind."26

It was also in Loos's thought that Schindler found the origin of the loss of significance of the ornament in modern society, and thus of its superfluity.27 Instead, Sullivan's formula of "form follows function" was expanded by Schindler into "form follows spiritual function"; that is, "the artist finds the essence of the function & tries to express it in its form,"28 according to the teachings of Otto Wagner, for whom "function" referred not so much to the building's material nature as to the life that had to flow in it, such that "two buildings of different purposes have to have different forms."29

If these were the heterogeneous sources of Schindler's thought, its crucial centre, the idea of a "space architecture," was manifested in the youthful and enthusiastic discovery of Wright's work.30 In 1934, when the violent break with the American maestro had already been bitterly consummated, Schindler remembered the essential significance of Wright's work as follows: "Here was 'space architecture.' It was not any more a question of moldings, caps and finials - here was space forms in meaningful shapes and relations. Here was the first architect."31

Shortly after his arrival in Chicago, Schindler had tried to get in touch with Wright. His first attempts were in vain, probably on account of the tragedy that had occurred at Taliesin in August 1914, when a servant, having killed Wright's mistress, Mamah Cheney, and her two children, in addition to four of Wright's employees, set the house on fire. On 23 November 1914, Schindler sent a letter to Wright in which he introduced himself as a "pupil of Otto Wagner in Vienna" and described his situation in Chicago and his eagerness to work with him. Wright responded immediately, inviting Schindler to "call sometime at my office, I will be glad to speak with you."32 The offer, however, was not actualized until November 1917, when Schindler was finally given the opportunity to collaborate on the working drawings for the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo.

The relationship between Schindler and Wright was characterized by extraordinary intensity and implacable enmity. In reality, the young architect was allowed to work directly with Wright only for brief periods. Starting in 1919, Wright would spend increasingly long periods of time in Japan, on location at the Imperial Hotel building site.33

As we have seen, Schindler had already assimilated certain design themes from Wright's Prairie houses even before fulfilling his wish to work with Wright. A letter of February 1919 shows that Schindler had by now absorbed the essential elements of Wright's poetics:

According to our conception a house is not a conglomeration of boxes, called rooms, filled with furniture and exhibiting numberless "stunts" of a busy decorator. A house is to be an organism, a complete material and spiritual whole - only divided up where necessary - but never containing "separate" rooms - that is, rooms different in spirit and conception. Nothing in it is merely introduced for the sake of decoration - everything develops out of a central idea.34
Two of Wright's projects in particular present elements of considerable interest: one for the J.P. Shampay residence, and the other for the so-called "Monolith Homes," conceived as a small eighteen-unit residential complex in Racine, Wisconsin. In both cases, the houses were moderate in size and repeated the scheme Schindler had already tried out, characterized by the symmetrical "cruciform" layout of the house around a large central fireplace. Yet, while the Shampay house was indisputably still part of the Prairie house type, the group of houses in Racine introduced challenges that Wright had never before confronted: the social issues related to financially feasible housing (which Schindler alluded to by calling the project "The Workers' House") and the problem of designing a prototype that could be built in a small series of identical models.

Despite the benevolence he at times demonstrated toward his young assistant, Wright had put him on his guard in 1919 against the temptation of overestimating his own role, in a letter in which the joking tone masked the seriousness of his intent. He hoped that Schindler was not "going to turn out to be the same kind of damn fool that I have been pestered with all these years."

Regarding prospective clients - "Schindler" is keeping my office and my work for me in my absence. He has no identity as "Schindler" with clients who want "Wright." . . . I really do not know quite what a "Schindler" would look like. You know much better what "a Wright" would look and be like and as the clients came to get it. The natural thing would be it would seem to lay it out as nearly as you can as I would do it and send it here for straightening. . . . Nicht wahr?35
Schindler's move to California in 1920 marked the opening of a new and crucial period for him, which was overshadowed from the start by the wearying task of supervising the Olive Hill building site and coping with Aline Barnsdall's disruptive uncertainties and impatience. Tempestuous conflicts arose at times between Wright, Schindler, and Barnsdall, and dealings with the many contractors were often difficult. Costs mounted rapidly, not only on account of Wright's extended absence and the consequent delays in defining the projects, but also because of the insecurity felt by the young supervisor, who found himself caught between the various parties and lacked the necessary experience and authority to deal with the many challenges.36 It was inevitable that the relationship between Schindler and Wright would suffer as a result. In the end, Wright wondered whether his collaborator was not partly to blame for the "criminal waste of money and time"37 that plagued the project in his absence. He described the situation to his son Lloyd in the following words:
I know R.M.S.'s faults - he is doing his best - but his attitude has always been what it is. He means neither harm nor disrespect really - It is not that he respects Wright less but values his hope of Schindler rather more in the secret recesses of his soul. It is the artist in him characteristically seducing and soothing his innermost Ego.38
Ten years later the break between Schindler and Wright became irreparable. The young collaborator's decision to open an independent practice in 1922 was a source of growing irritation for Wright, who certainly did not appreciate the small commissions Schindler was receiving from some of his old clients - Aline Barnsdall, Charles P. Lowes, and finally Harriet and Samuel Freeman (for whom Wright had built one of his most beautiful houses, in assembled blocks of textured concrete, in the hills of Hollywood). When Schindler had tried to defend his role as head designer during Wright's prolonged absence in Japan, the latter's reaction was merciless. In a letter to his son Lloyd on 19 June 1931, he described Schindler as "the pus-bag at Los Angeles" and referred to Schindler and Neutra as "that lying duet at Kings Road."39 In a letter written that same day to Schindler, he closed off any possibility of reconciliation:
I'll be honest with you. Get this: Where I am my office is. My office is me. Frank Lloyd Wright has no other office, never had one, and never will have one. You know it damned well. He has never had a "foreman" in his work. A superintendent only rarely on any job. What "office" then were you in charge of? You were, officially, superintendent of the Barnsdall houses, and a poor excuse for one, playing both ends against the middle all the time. You were "officially" nothing else. I left you behind me to finish up certain things I had begun. If you don't know I would no more dream of building any of your imitations of me than I would those of any one of the forty or more workmen who sought work with me, you are not only yellow but feebleminded. . . . I want no more communication with you. Anything from you will go back unopened. . . ."40
The large, unlucky project for Olive Hill (including Hollyhock House) played a crucial part in Schindler's intellectual biography, and not only in its having been an irreversible turning point in his relationship with Wright. Indeed, in this project, Wright had formulated in a particular way the question of the original character of American architecture that, as we have seen, had impassioned Schindler from the very moment he had arrived on American soil. Neil Levine has aptly noted that the two historical models to which Wright laid claim, that of Mexico's pre-Columbian architecture and that of the stepped and layered horizontal masses seen as "a mesa silhouette, terrace on terrace, characterized and developed by Pueblo Indians,"41 anticipated "D.H. Lawrence's appeal to the artists and writers of the United States to 'Listen to Your Own' and 'take up life where the Red Indian, the Aztec, the Maya, the Incas left off,' so as to 'pick up the life-thread' of 'the dusky continent' of America."42

The main objective of Wright's explorations, spelled out as early as 1910-1911 in his introduction to the Wasmuth portfolio,43 was the creation of a "true American architecture," based on its original organic forms and its original cultural tradition.44 In the Southwest, amidst the forms of the natural landscape and the very ancient structures of the culture, this architecture seems to express itself in an affinity between the human habitat and the mountain, observed by Wright in the great Mayan monuments, which he interpreted as abstractions of natural forms, "earth-architectures: gigantic masses of masonry raised up on great stone-paved terrain, all planned as one mountain, one vast plateau lying there or made into the great mountain ranges themselves."45 It was in his notes for a lecture given in February 1921 at the Modern School in Los Angeles that Schindler re-proposed this idea (originally adumbrated in the "Program" of 1912-1913) of an indispensable balance between the "house of man" and the surrounding nature: "The modern man does not dread the elements. He masters them. The modern house is not a place of refuge. The whole face of the earth is turning [out] to be the house of man."46

In Los Angeles he found further confirmation of his understanding of the nature of American architecture in the work of Irvin Gill. Gill too had first arrived in Chicago in 1890 to learn Sullivan's lesson of "the luminous idea of simplicity," working side-by-side with Frank Lloyd Wright, who was then chief draftsman in the office. Two years later he had continued his journey toward the very mild climate of California, so well suited to his fragile health, until he reached San Diego, gathering along the way the original sources of an American tradition founded on the memories of the native indigenous civilizations, the adobe Indian settlements, the Catholic missions built by the Franciscan monks, and Spanish Colonial architecture.

It appeared obvious to Gill that this tradition could be fully realized more naturally in the uncontaminated splendour of the West: "In California we have the great wide plains, arched blue skies that are fresh chapters yet unwritten. We have noble mountains, lovely little hills and canyons waiting to hold the record of this generation's history, ideals, imagination, sense of romance and honesty."47

It was probably Wright, who had collaborated with Gill as early as 1912, who facilitated the relationship between the American architect, then already in his fifties, and the young Austrian.48 Over the course of 1922, the relationship between the two had already become one of friendship. There are a few fragmentary testimonies of this, including a letter from Schindler dated January 1922 in which he invited his colleague "to spend next Sunday with us on the 'job'"49 - referring to the recently opened building site for the house at Kings Road, for which Schindler had also obtained tools and equipment from Gill to build the concrete walls of his house with the technique of "tilt-slab construction."50

Upon returning from a brief vacation with his wife, Pauline Gibling, in Yosemite Park in October 1921, after the final exhausting weeks spent trying to bring the works on the Olive Hill building site to a close,51 Schindler at last made the difficult decision to open his own office in Los Angeles.52

In the following weeks, the project for the residence-studio that still remains among Schindler's crucial works took shape with surprising speed. On 26 November Schindler was able to describe it in a letter to his father-in-law, Edmund J. Gibling, in the hope of obtaining financial support for building the house:

From S.P.G. I hear that it may be possible to actively interest you in our venture - and thus I am sending you prints of our first sketches - which will give a better idea of the scheme than a letter. The basic idea is to give each person their own room - instead of the usual distribution - and to do most of the cooking right on the table - making it more a social "campfire" affair, than the disagreeable burden to one member of the family. . . . The rooms are large studio-rooms - with concrete walls on three sides, the front open (glass) to the outdoors - a real California scheme. Two "sleeping baskets" are provided on the roof - for outdoor sleeping - with a temporary cover for rainy nights.53
The informality of the plan's layout corresponded to the idealistic and reformist convictions and expectation of the young couple. There was no distinction between the day and night zones, nor any kind of spatial hierarchy, nor any system of circulation. This is how Schindler summed up the basic idea of the house in an article he published in the Los Angeles Times in 1926:
Our rooms will descend close to the ground and the garden will become an integral part of the house. The distinction between the indoors and the out-of-doors will disappear. The walls will be few, thin, and removable. All rooms will become part of an organic unit, instead of being small separate boxes with peepholes. . . . Our house will lose its front-and-back-door aspect. It will cease being a group of dens, some larger ones for social effect, and a few smaller ones (bedrooms) in which to herd the family. Each individual will want a private room to gain a background for his life. He will sleep in the open. A work-and-play room, together with the garden, will satisfy the group needs.54
Thus the house at Kings Road is a kind of synthesis of the two prototypical forms of the human dwelling proposed in Semper's genealogy: the cave and the tent, the solid stone and the light fabric, joined together in an essential metaphor of the encampment in direct contact with the natural landscape - "the basic requirements for a camper's shelter: a protected back, an open front, a fireplace, and a roof."55

The path chosen in the residence-studio at Kings Road is easily recognizable in other projects belonging to this phase of Schindler's work. Above all, it was the project for a desert cabin for Paul Popenoe that, in 1922, offered Schindler the opportunity to once again take up the theme he had begun in the project for the Martin residence in Taos and the 1918 Log House.

The first version of the Popenoe Cabin project delineated a completely introverted building, devoid of any openings toward the outside except the small entrance; the perimeter, with its angles bevelled at 45 degrees, enclosed the domestic areas and a garden court (the "jungle," as Schindler called it), which presented itself as a fragment that belonged to and yet was separated from the natural surroundings. The house opened onto this garden through a large glass wall that, as in Kings Road, constituted the fourth, transparent side; the massive walls on the other three sides were of such thickness that they seemed to have been thought out in adobe rather than concrete. A fireplace open on two sides distributed the various uses of the large residential area, flanked only by the two small cells separated by the kitchen and the studio. Just two months later, Schindler was able to radically rethink the final version of the project, the realization of which was practically completed by late October.56 A square, measuring eight metres on each side, housed the living room in the centre, illuminated by a thin clerestory window, around which were placed the kitchen, bathroom, and, on two opposite sides, "his nook" and that of the lady of the house and her child. The terrace surrounding the entire house doubled the surface area, and it could be shielded by a textile screen all around, resulting in four "porches" designated for living, dining, cooking, and sleeping outdoors. Schindler's small house is especially interesting in that it proposes architecture in perfect balance with the majestic desert landscape that surrounds it, developing the themes explored in the 1918 Log House, conceiving the wrapping of the building as a thin permeable skin around the domestic spaces, and leaving undefined the borders between the exterior and the interior and between the opaque wall and window - a domestic architecture that mixed the encampment motifs of the pioneers journeying toward the western frontier and those of the terraced volumes of the Indian pueblos. The ladder, leaning against the exterior to reach the terrace of the flat roof, exactly as in the Taos pueblo, constitutes the most ingenuous and most explicit testimony to a sense of belonging and a rootedness in history.

A few years later, in 1925-1926, the experience of the Popenoe Cabin once again proved useful to Schindler, as he began working on a cabin in Wrightwood for Dr. Philip Lovell, and on a residence in Fallbrook for Carlton Park. The former project repeated the layout of the square living room in the centre, with the bedrooms and other facilities distributed along three sides and a sun roof reachable by an exterior ladder from the large terrace that surrounded the perimeter of the house. In its extreme simplicity the entire project seems to have been devised as a means of guaranteeing its inhabitants - among them Lovell's patients - the salubrious effects of living in direct contact with nature, freed from the conventions and formalities of urban civilization.

We know how the home of Rudolf Schindler and his wife Pauline soon became a vital centre of a very mixed community of artists, intellectuals, and reformers who wanted to create an original, anarchic, and visionary American way of life in the clement climate of California. Aline Barnsdall herself was bold enough to challenge J. Edgar Hoover's Federal Bureau of Investigation by offering economic assistance to the anarchist Emma Goldman when she was deported to Russia in December 1919.57 Other members included Philip Lovell, a homeopathic doctor and hygienist, with his wife Leah Press, as well as her sister Harriet, wife of Samuel Freeman, for whom Wright had designed one of his most beautiful houses in textured concrete blocks.

Schindler and his wife received detailed reports on the adventurous undertaking of a group of about 200 members of the International Workers of the World (IWW), communists and enthusiastic American idealists who, in 1922, had given life to an autonomous industrial colony in Kemerovo, in the basin of Kuzbas in the Soviet Union, during the period of Lenin's New Economic Policy.58

In the years that followed, Schindler's attention would often be focused on the Soviet reality. Among his friends were Alexander Kaun,59 a professor of Russian literature and author of essays on Maxim Gorky and Soviet poetry, for whom Schindler did a beach house in Richmond in 1934-1935, and the writer Theodore Dreiser, who was an assiduous visitor to the house at Kings Road after his trip to the Soviet Union in 1927-1928 and his joining the Communist Party with an invitation to "start life over again" in the land where socialism had been achieved. By February 1931, perhaps because of the impact of the Great Depression on his livelihood,60 Schindler actually began proposing to work in the Soviet Union, following the example of other notable European architects such as Ernst May, Mart Stam, and Hannes Meyer: "I hear that Russia has engaged several German architects to help build up the country. I would be interested to go myself and wonder if you could tell me details about the procedure."61 He received a rather reluctant response, offering a job only if he was willing to be paid in rubles and to cover his own travel expenses - conditions quite unlike those offered to European colleagues who had preceded him.62

The distant reality of the Soviet Union was also evoked during the construction of one of Schindler's masterpieces from the 1920s, the residence of James Eads How and his wife Ingeborg in the Los Angeles suburb of Silverlake. The figure of James Eads How merits some particular consideration. The son of a self-taught engineer and prolific inventor, How had decided early on to dedicate his fortune to the homeless, giving life to the International Brotherhood Welfare Association, through which free lodging and meals were offered, and inaugurating the first Hobo College in Chicago in 1913, established with the goal of educating and training the homeless for work.63 How did not give up his humanitarian ideals when he moved to Los Angeles in the early 1920s: indeed, during the time his house was being built, he was in Europe planning a visit to the Soviet Union, which at the time was an uncommon and difficult undertaking.64 His letters to Schindler, invariably opening with the traditional socialist greeting of "Dear Comrade," alternated between his excitement over the upcoming trip to Russia and his interest in the progress on his new house, for which Schindler had developed a project in which an extraordinarily free concept of space still allowed him to harmonize all three dimensions of the modular proportioning of the individual parts.65

In the years preceding the outbreak of the First World War, Los Angeles had experienced a wave of turbulent social unrest that reached its climax in 1910 when a large strike by metal workers was forcibly opposed through the prohibition of all types of picketing, the creation of a systematic blacklist, and a veritable private army of gunmen and strikebreakers. In October 1910, an explosion destroyed the headquarters of the Los Angeles Times, throwing a sinister cast on the mayoral race, in which the candidate on the socialist ticket, a lawyer named Job Harriman, seemed to be leading. Four days before the election, a prominent union leader who was under investigation admitted responsibility for the explosion, and this abrupt turn of events led to Harriman's inevitable defeat. From then on, up until the early 1930s, Los Angeles was one of the most reactionary cities in the country and the last bastion of the controversial "open shop" system, where strikes and union activities and even the right of free speech were virtually banned.66

Several years after the end of the war, a strike of thousands of longshoremen paralyzed the port of San Pedro, causing a violent reaction on the part of the Merchants and Manufacturers Association, which in turn led to arrests, beatings, and efforts to block any show of support for the strikers. By the fourth week of the strike, "local sympathizers and members of the American Civil Liberties Union joined the IWW leaders in seeking to maintain rights of free speech."67 Among these, the best known and most widely respected was the writer Upton Sinclair, who in May 1923 was arrested by the police because he had tried to speak at San Pedro.68 Sinclair's lawyer, who "was to stand by as a witness to the proceedings,"69 was John Cooper Packard. The following year, Packard entrusted Schindler with the task of designing his family home in Pasadena. On this occasion, Schindler devised a crystalline architecture surprisingly free of any stylistic bias in the direction of modernist dogma. The "Y" plan divided the space into three independent areas - for the parents, for the children, and for a living room - each in its own way projected toward the exterior, with gardens, patio lawn, play areas, terraces, and the inevitable porches for sleeping outside. At the centre was a triangular-shaped kitchen, the symbolic heart of the domestic hearth, echoed by the lower portion of the steep covering that gave the living area its distinctive appearance.

In this particular historical context, the insurmountable difficulties Schindler had to face between December 1921 and January 1923 to be certified as an architect by the California State Board of Architecture are not surprising. The correspondence preserved in Schindler's archives70 documents the infuriating obstinacy he encountered. His repeated efforts were hindered time and again by ever new requirements, and it became clear to him that these endless delays were motivated by strictly political considerations: "I understand that this is done in order to examine further a statement made concerning my political views. I may say incidentally that the statement is unfounded; but I write to ask what possible bearing religious or political views can have upon the qualification of architects fitly to perform their work." Again several years later, turning to Frank Lloyd Wright for a letter of recommendation in support of renewal of his certification, he reiterated the belief that his lack of recognition resulted from the fact that he was regarded as "a Socialist, and therefore not eligible for a license."71

Schindler had relatively few opportunities to prove himself with a housing complex after Wright's "Monolith Home" project in 1919. There was the crucial experience of Pueblo Ribera Court in La Jolla between 1923 and 1924, which permitted the young architect and Clyde Chace, who oversaw the work, to extend the experiments tried in the Kings Road residence-studio to a small group of twelve vacation homes. The continuity can be seen both in the use of concrete, laid here by pouring one horizontal layer each day and then moving the frame up to the next position, and in the conception of the domestic space, divided on the ground floor and enclosed on three sides, opening onto a small garden, and with a terrace on the flat roof that doubled the size of the outdoor living area. Its nickname, "Indian Village," aptly characterizes this work, in which Schindler presents himself as an interpreter of a particular type of California "wilderness," combining reckless technical experimentation (reflected in the countless misadventures of a building that evidently refused to become watertight) with an aspiration to be "modern American all the way,"72 as the architect himself put it.

Two housing developments from 1923-1924, an "Industrial City" for Whyman and Brueckner - documented only by an aerial perspective73 - and a "Workmen's Colony" for Gould and Bandini,74 are roughly contemporaneous examples whose similarity leads one to wonder whether they might in fact have been parts of a single project.75 They reveal Schindler's interest in broadening his scope from the single-family home to the more socially-oriented structures of low-cost housing and collective settlements.

In 1924 Schindler embarked on yet another project for a residential complex that presents some particularly interesting aspects. The history of "Harriman's Colony" stands, in fact, as a memorable episode in itself.76

As already noted, Job Harriman was the socialist lawyer who had lost the election for mayor of Los Angeles in 1911. Wounded by his defeat, Harriman became convinced that it was impossible for the socialist movement to achieve political success through the support of the trade union organizations alone. Out of these reflections came the establishment in 1914 of the Llano del Rio Company, which acquired a tract of land in the Antelope Valley, about ninety miles outside Los Angeles, and the foundation of the cooperative colony of Llano. What Llano promised was, in Harriman's own words, a chance to "show the world a trick they do not know, which is how to live without war or interest in money or rent on land or profiteering in any manner."77 Llano was conceived along the lines of many similar communities that, beginning in the late nineteenth century, had arisen one after another in Europe and in America, animated by the ideals of what was called in Germany the "life reform movement" while also encompassing anarchism, socialism, vegetarianism, and a variety of sectarian religious movements. The aims of such communities typically included efforts to achieve economic self-sufficiency, live in greater harmony with nature, develop pioneering forms of group-oriented living, devote special attention to cultural and artistic enterprises, experiment with non-authoritarian forms of education, and celebrate festivities in a communal and enthusiastic spirit.78 With this there often came a desire to conceive of a new, ideal urban form, one that would eliminate the discomfort and squalor of large capitalist metropolises. In Llano, under the guidance of Alice Constance Austin, a self-taught architect who had assumed the role of city planner from 1915 to 1917, discussions abounded and proposals were advanced concerning the ideal forms of the new "socialist city," modelled apparently on designs for a garden-city elaborated by Ebenezer Howard in 1898. The projects for the various buildings revealed a certain predilection for the simple and monumental forms of Pueblo Revival architecture and also perhaps the work of Irvin Gill.79

In late 1917, in the wake of a severe economic crisis and disastrous internal feuding, some of the Llano colonists decided to pursue their experiment in far-off Louisiana, where they created Newllano. The life of this new colony was also plagued by intrigues and endless disagreements. In June 1924, Harriman was finally defeated in the colonists' assembly, and he and his supporters were forced to leave Newllano. Weakened by tuberculosis and suffering from delusions, Harriman returned to Los Angeles, while the other colonists tried to establish a new community in Mena, Arkansas.

In July Harriman was in touch with Schindler, proposing that he take care of the project for the new colony: "We are thinking of starting another colony. We think we can see our way to finance it. If the step is taken could you come down and stay with us a month or two to design our buildings and lay out the village? It will afford a real opportunity to do something worthwhile in this line, something unique and artistic."80 Soon after, Harriman approached the architect again, describing in considerable detail the city he wished to build.81 The models he adduced were Alice Austin's classically reformist plan for Llano and, above all, Frederick Law Olmsted's plan for the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto, done in 1887.82 The same examples seem to have inspired Ernest Wooster, who carried on a correspondence with Schindler from Ink, Arkansas, in which he described a settlement for 1,200 to 1,500 inhabitants, with a university for about 500 students.83 Wooster also produced a sketch of his own representing a system of blocks laid out around a central semi-circular park, with a large green courtyard inside each block,84 in accordance with a geometric scheme that, since Friedrich Weinbrenner's plan for Karlsruhe, had reappeared frequently in ideal city projects of the nineteenth century. Schindler replied that "the plan you enclosed in your letter could not be considered a basis for my work. It is about thirty years behind me. . . . I have not yet seen a colony of this kind handled with sufficient imagination to make it a success in all respects. But I believe in cooperation, and will do all in my power to help your enterprise."85

Schindler did, in fact, proceed to work on the project.86 The surviving drawings envision a residential complex of twenty-six independent living units, separated from each other by private gardens and by walkways that converged at two different points, one where the garages were concentrated and the other at the entrance to the complex, toward the main access road, where the community hall and a large playground were to be situated. This was probably just one of the neighbourhoods of the planned city, which was conceived in a homogeneously unified pattern, combining in an extraordinarily coherent design the "American dream" of the single-family house surrounded by a small lawn and reformist ideals of an intensely community-oriented life.

The letters Schindler sent in January and in July of 1925 were never answered.87 The embarrassed John Packard, the lawyer who owned the lovely house in Pasadena, had to justify the reasons for its failure to his architect friend: "Mrs. Harriman, who was the final judge in the matter, did not like the plans nor did she want to build at any time."88

Meanwhile the group of colonists in Arkansas had already split into two rival camps, and Harriman himself was fated to make his final exit shortly after, succumbing to tuberculosis on 25 October 1925.89

Schindler's dream of creating an entire American "socialist city" was thus destined to remain unrealized. Only his houses, right up to the extraordinary one built in 1949 for Ellen Janson, his last companion, would remain to testify to his unwavering desire to give form in space to a modern American architecture.

The preliminary research for this essay was supported in part by the Istituto Universitario di Architecture di Venezia (IUAV) as well as through a generous invitation from New York University. I am grateful for having been able to consult archival materials at the University Art Museum of the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), where my work was facilitated by the friendly assistance of Kurt Helfrich, Trang D. Le, and Eric Lutz; the Research Library of the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles; the Bobst Library, New York University; and the Avery Library, Columbia University, New York. The librarians of the IUAV have, as always, been prompt and helpful in responding to my requests. I am indebted to Thomas S. Hines for having shared with me the results of his research on Irvin Gill, and to Stefanos Polyzoides for documents he made available to me. Last but not least, my thanks to Marlene Klein for her translation of the text of this lecture.


1.  Henry-Russell Hitchcock, "Preface," in Schindler, by David Gebhard (1971; San Francisco: William Stout, 1997), 7.

2.  Letter from Schindler to Johnson, 9 March 1932, in R.M. Schindler, Architect, ed. August Sarnitz (New York: Rizzoli, 1988), 209; originally published in German, R.M. Schindler, Architekt: 1887-1953 (Vienna: Akademie der Bildenden Künste, 1986).

3Ausgefühhrte Bauten und Entwürfe von Frank Lloyd Wright, 2 vols. (Berlin: Ernst Wasmuth, 1910-1911); Frank Lloyd Wright: Ausgeführte Bauten, with text by Charles Robert Ashbee (Berlin: Ernst Wasmuth, 1911).

4.  Little is known about the origin and date of "Moderne Architektur: Ein Programm." In 1932 Schindler sent an English version to the Japanese magazine Kokusai Kenchiku, claiming to have written it in 1912. The typewritten copy in the Schindler Papers held by the University Art Museum at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), bears the date June 1913. The first partial publication of the 1932 version by Hans Hollein (Aufbau, no. 3 [1961], 102-108) was followed by an unabridged publication by Sarnitz in R.M. Schindler, Architekt, 144. The original 1913 version, in German, was published in Visionaere & Vetriebene: Oesterreichische Spuren in der modernen amerikanischen Architektur, ed. Matthias Boeckl (Berlin: Ernst & Sohn, 1995), 112-115. A new English translation was published by Harry Francis Mallgrave in R.M. Schindler: Composition and Construction, ed. Lionel March and Judith Sheine (London: Academy Editions; Berlin: Ernst & Sohn, 1995), 10-12.

5.  R.M. Schindler, "Modern Architecture: A Program," in R.M. Schindler: Composition and Construction, 10.

6.  Here Mallgrave's translation (ibid., p. 12) is imprecise, as it leaves out Schindler's reference to time and space.

7.  Harry Francis Mallgrave, "Schindler's Program of 1913," in R.M. Schindler: Composition and Construction, 17.

8.  See Konrad Fiedler, "Bemerkungen ueber Wesen und Geschichte der Baukunst," in Schriften zur Kunst (Munich, 1914).

9.  August Schmarsow, Das Wesen der architektonischen Schöpfung (Leipzig: Karl W. Hiersemann, 1894), opening lecture given at the University of Leipzig on 8 November 1893, translated in Empathy, Form, and Space: Problems in German Aesthetics 1873-1893, ed. Harry Francis Mallgrave and Eleftherios Ikonomou (Santa Monica: The Getty Center for the History of Art and the Humanities, 1994), 287. On this subject, see also Bettina Köhler, "Architekturgeschichte als Geschichte der Raumwahrnehmung / Architecture History as the History of Spatial Experience," Daidalos, no. 67 (1998), 36-43.

10.  The lecture notes have heretofore not been discussed or taken into account by scholars. Dated 1916, they are neatly written in English on sheets bearing the letterhead "Henry L. Ottenheimer, Architect, 134 Monroe St. Chicago" - the architecture studio in which Schindler was employed. It is worth noting that the "Program" is in some cases referred to as being from 1912 and in other cases from 1913. Esther McCoy (Vienna to Los Angeles: Two Journeys [Santa Monica: Arts + Architecture Press, 1979], 31) remarks that Schindler "also taught some classes" at the Church School of Design, where he met Edith Gutterson, who would introduce him to his future wife Pauline Gibling at the beginning of 1919. Sarnitz (R.M. Schindler, Architekt, 198) mentions talks on architecture given by Schindler in 1916 at the "Chicago School of Applied and Normal Art" - perhaps simply an inaccurate reference to the Church School of Design. The Schindler Papers also contain the notes (forty handwritten sheets bearing the letterhead of the "Architectural Group for Industry and Commerce") for six lectures given by Schindler at the Chouinard School in Los Angeles in 1931; the treatment of the various topics is strikingly similar to that of the 1916 manuscript.

11.  R.M. Schindler, "Lectures: Church School, Chicago," I:1. The manuscript pages are not numbered; the Roman numeral refers to the number of the lecture, the Arabic numeral to that of the page within the lecture.

12.  Ibid., II:1.

13.  Adolf Loos, "Architektur," in Trotzdem (Innsbruck: Brenner-Verlag, 1931; Vienna: G. Prachner, 1982), 90-104. Loos's text was written in 1909.

14.  Schindler, "Lectures: Church School, Chicago," II:3-4.

15.  Gottfried Semper, Vorlesung zur Gebäudelehre (1848). See Heidrun Laudel, Gottfried Semper: Architektur und Stil (Dresden: Verlag der Kunst, 1991), 82ff.

16.  Letter from Schindler to Richard Neutra, from Chicago, late March 1914, in McCoy, Vienna to Los Angeles, 104-105.

17.  The first article dedicated to the Schindler's trip west is David Gebhard's "R.M. Schindler in New Mexico: 1915," The New Mexico Architect 7, no. 1-2 (January-February 1965), 15-21.

18.  Letter from Schindler to Neutra, 9 February 1915, in Thomas S. Hines, Richard Neutra and the Search for Modern Architecture (New York: Oxford University Press, 1982), 321.

19.  Part of the letter was published by McCoy in Vienna to Los Angeles, 129-130. The entire original German version was published by Sarnitz in R.M. Schindler, Architekt, 204-205.

20.  See letter from Martin to Schindler, dated 14 November 19[15], and letter from Schindler to Martin, dated 14 December 1915, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

21.  The sketch of the plan preserved in the Schindler Papers, UCSB, and published as cat. no. 1961e in The Architectural Drawings of R.M. Schindler, ed. David Gebhard (New York: Garland Publishing, 1993), vol. 2, 600, is dated April 1918. Gebhard himself proposed a dating prior to 1916 in his seminal monograph, Schindler, 23.

22.  Lionel March, "Log House, Urhütte and Temple," in R.M. Schindler: Composition and Construction, 102-113.

23.  Gottfried Semper, Der Stil, vol. 2 (1877; Mittenwald: Mäander Kunstverlag, 1977), 276.

24.  Schindler, "Lectures: Church School, Chicago," V:5.

25.  Adolf Loos, "Das Heim," Das Andere, no. 1 (1903), 9.

26.  Schindler, "Lectures: Church School, Chicago," V:5, VI:5.

27.  Adolf Loos, "Ornament und Verbrechen," in Trotzdem, 78-88. Loos's text is from 1908. See Schindler, "Lectures: Church School, Chicago," XI:3.

28.  Schindler, "Lectures: Church School, Chicago," IX:3.

29.  Ibid., IX:4.

30.  In "Space Architecture," Dune Forum, February 1934, 44-46, Schindler mentions getting a copy of Wright's "portfolio," published in Berlin by Wasmuth, from a library in Vienna "shortly" after the summer of 1911 in order to have a look at it.

31.  Ibid., 45.

32.  Schindler's letter to Wright and Wright's reply of the same day are preserved at the Research Library of the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles. These letters prove that the two architects had been in contact well before 1916, contrary to the claims of Gebhard (Schindler, 25), and August Sarnitz (R.M. Schindler, Architekt, 15).

33.  See the chronology of Wright's activities in Anthony Alofsin, Frank Lloyd Wright: The Lost Years, 1910-1922 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993), 307-310.

34.  Draft of a letter from Schindler to "Mr. Frank L. Pfeuffer, Omaja . . . Ote . . . Cuba," circa February 1919 (reply to a letter from Pfeuffer dated 10 February 1919), Schindler Papers, UCSB.

35.  Letter from Frank Lloyd Wright to Schindler, unknown date in 1919, Research Library, Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles.

36.  For a reconstruction of the entire story, see Kathryn Smith, Frank Lloyd Wright, Hollyhock House and Olive Hill: Buildings and Projects for Aline Barnsdall (New York: Rizzoli, 1992).

37.  Telegram from Frank Lloyd Wright to Schindler, 23 June 1921, in Smith, Frank Lloyd Wright, Hollyhock House and Olive Hill, 126.

38.  Letter from Frank Lloyd Wright to Lloyd Wright, 26 June 1921, ibid., 158-160.

39.  Letter from Frank Lloyd Wright to Lloyd Wright, 19 June 1931, quoted in Brendan Gill, Many Masks: A Life of Frank Lloyd Wright (New York: Putnam, 1987; Da Capo Press, 1998), 322.

40.  Letter from Frank Lloyd Wright to Schindler, 19 June 1931, ibid., 322-323. See also Finis Farr, Frank Lloyd Wright: A Biography (London: Jonathan Cape; New York: Scribner, 1961), and Meryle Secrest, Frank Lloyd Wright: A Biography (New York: Knopf, 1992).

41.  Neil Levine, The Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996), 140, no. 75 (quoting Lloyd Wright's observations).

42.  Ibid., 139ff. D.H. Lawrence's appeal, "America, Listen to Your Own," was originally published in 1920; see Phoenix: The Posthumous Papers of D.H. Lawrence, ed. Edward D. McDonald (1936; Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1978), 90-91.

43.  Frank Lloyd Wright, introduction to Ausgeführte Bauten und Entwürfe von Frank Lloyd Wright.

444.  See Alofsin, Frank Lloyd Wright: The Lost Years, 258ff.

45.  Frank Lloyd Wright, A Testament (New York: Horizon Press, 1954), 111.

46.  Schindler Papers, UCSB.

47.  Irvin Gill, "The Home of the Future: The New Architecture of the West: Small Houses for a Great Country," The Craftsman, May 1916, quoted in Esther McCoy, Five California Architects (New York: Reinhold, 1960; Praeger, 1975), 61.

48.  Suggested by Kathryn Smith in R.M. Schindler House, 1921-22 (West Hollywood: Friends of the Schindler House, 1987), 9.

49.  Letter from Schindler to Gill, 31 January 1922, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

50.  Letter from Schindler to Gill, 4 February 1922, Schindler Papers, UCSB. In another letter, dated 6 April, Schindler invited Gill to visit the house on King's Road, where he was planning to go and live in the guest room the following week.

51.  "I shall take a vacation presently in order to restore my equilibrium," Schindler wrote to Wright on 13 September 1921; quoted in Donald Hoffmann, Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House (New York: Dover 1992), 37.

52.  Letter from Schindler to Neutra, October 1921, quoted in McCoy, Vienna to Los Angeles, 137-138.

53.  Smith, R.M. Schindler House, 1921-22, 18-19.

54.  R.M. Schindler, "'Care of the Body': Shelter or Playground," Los Angeles Times, 2 May 1926; reprinted in Sarnitz, R.M. Schindler Architect, 46-47.

55.  R.M. Schindler, "A Cooperative Dwelling," T-Square 2 (February 1932), 20-21.

56.  In a letter to Schindler dated 26 October 1922 (Schindler Papers, UCSB), Popenoe asked the architect to define the colour scheme, for the completion of the project the following week.

57.  See Hoffmann, Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House, 28-29.

58.  See Ernest S. Wooster, Communities of the Past and the Present (Newllano, La.:, Llano Colonist, 1924), 138-141; J.P. Morray, Project Kuzbas: American Workers in Siberia (1921-1926) (New York: International Publishers, 1983).

59.  Kaun was born in 1889. His most important publications are Maxim Gorky and His Russia (New York: J. Cape & H. Smith, 1931), and Soviet Poets and Poetry (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1943).

60.  Schindler's only significant project in 1930 was a house for Robert Elliot. The only work documented for the following two years involved the Hollywood residence of H.N. von Koerber and some small renovation jobs.

61.  Letter from Schindler to Amtorg Trading Corp., New York, 21 February 1931, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

62.  Letter from Amtorg Trading Corp. to Schindler, 6 March 1931, Schindler Papers, UCSB. Schindler's further overtures in May 1932 were met with a negative response from the Russians (letters dated 18 and 26 May 1932). On the activity of European architects in the Soviet Union during the 1930s, see Marco De Michelis and Ernesto Pasini, La città sovietica, 1925-1937 (Padua: Marsilio, 1976).

63.  Frank Orman Beck, Hobohemia (Rindge, N.H.: R.R. Smith, 1956). See also James Steele's monograph How House: R.M. Schindler (London: Academy Editions, 1996).

64.  Letter from James Eads How to Schindler, 23 July 1925, and letter from Ingeborg How to Schindler, 4 August 1925, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

65.  For Lionel March's brilliant analysis of the How residence, see his "Dr. How's Magical Music Box," in R.M. Schindler: Composition and Construction, 124-145.

66.  The best history of this period, originally published in 1946 by a good friend of Schindler's, Carey McWilliams, was reprinted more recently under the title Southern California: An Island on the Land (Salt Lake City: Peregrine Smith, 1973). See also Paul Greenstein, Nigey Lennon, and Lionel Rolfe, Bread and Hyacinths: The Rise and Fall of Utopian Los Angeles (Los Angeles: California Classic Books, 1992).

67.  Louis B. and Richard S. Perry, A History of the Los Angeles Labor Movement, 1911-1941 (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1963), 185.

68.  See Upton Sinclair, "We Get Arrested a Little," The Liberator 7, no. 16 (July 1923).

69.  Philip S. Foner, History of the Labor Movement in the United States, vol. 9 (New York: International Publishers, 1991), 42-44.

70.  Letters dated 2 December 1921, 12 January, 6 February, 13 February, 21 February, 7 March 1922, and 8 January 1923, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

71.  Letter from Schindler to Frank Lloyd Wright, 17 July 1929, published by Bradley R. Storrer in "The Schindler Licensing Letters: Schindler-Wright Exchange," Journal of the Taliesin Fellows, no. 9 (Winter 1992-1993), 14-19.

72.  Letter from Schindler to Ruth Ragan, 2 May 1935, Schindler Papers, UCSB. Ragan, who had bought one of the houses at Pueblo Ribera, wrote of a recognizable "Japanese atmosphere" in the development.

73.  This project is referred to in a letter by Schindler to Whyman and Brueckner dated 7 September 1923 (Schindler Papers, UCSB), containing the specifications of the development's model unit.

74.  Among the project file folders preserved in the Schindler Papers there is one labelled "Specifications for a typical unit of an Industrial Housing Scheme," dated April 1924.

75.  In Gebhard, The Architectural Drawings of R.M. Schindler, vol. 2, 92, and vol. 4, 433, there are two absolutely identical perspectives, one a sketch and the other a finished rendering. The former is related to a project for Gould and Bandini; the latter to the "Industrial City" for Whyman and Brueckner.

76.  The project is referred to in all of the records of Schindler's work as "Housing Development for J. Harriman," with a date of 1924-1925, and an assumed site in Los Angeles.

77.  Quoted in Dolores Hayden, Seven American Utopias: The Architecture of Communitarian Socialism, 1790-1975 (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1976), 289-290.

78.  A great deal has been written about Llano. In addition to the studies by McWilliams (Southern California: An Island on the Land), Wooster (Communities of the Past and Present, 117-133), Hayden (Seven American Utopias, 288-317), and Greenstein et al. (Bread and Hyacinths), see also Robert V. Hine, California's Utopian Colonies (San Marino: Huntington Library, 1953; New Haven: Yale University Press, 1966); Paul K. Conkin, Two Paths to Utopia: The Hutterites and the Llano Colony (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1964); Aldous Huxley, "Llano del Rio: Oxymondius, the Utopia That Failed," California Historical Quarterly 51 (1971), 119-130; Paul Kagan, "Llano del Rio: Portrait of a California Utopia," ibid., 131-154; Yaacov Oved, Two Hundreds Years of American Communes (New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction Books, 1988), 285-310; Edward K. Spann, Brotherly Tomorrows: Movements for a Cooperative Society in America, 1820-1920 (New York: Columbia University Press, 1989), 262-277; and Mike Davis, City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles (London and New York: Verso, 1990), 3-14. Llano also had its own newspapers, The Western Comrade and The Llano Colonist.

79.  See Hayden, Seven American Utopias, 298ff. Two noteworthy pieces by Alice Constance Austin were "Building a Socialist City," The Western Comrade 4, no. 6 (October 1916), 17, 26-27, and "The Socialist City," The Western Comrade 5, no. 2 (June 1917), 14, 26.

80.  Letter from Harriman to Schindler, 7 July 1924, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

81.  Letter from Harriman to Schindler, 31 July 1924, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

82.  See Paul Venable Turner, Campus: An American Planning Tradition (New York: Architectural History Foundation; Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1984, 174ff.

83.  Letter from Wooster to Schindler, 15 October 1924, Schindler Papers, UCSB. 84.  The handwritten sheet (Schindler Papers, UCSB) with a brief description and scheme of William Zeuch's plan, is not dated.

85.  Letter from Schindler to Wooster, 30 October 1924, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

86.  See Gebhard, The Architectural Drawings of R.M. Schindler, vol. 2, 130-135.

87.  Letters from Schindler to Harriman, 1 January and 1 July 1925, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

88.  Letter from Packard to Schindler, 11 July 1925, and letter from Schindler to Packard, 14 July 1925, Schindler Papers, UCSB.

89.  The entire Harriman archives were destroyed by his wife shortly after his death, and so most of the records of this extraordinarily complex project are lost to history.