In 1950, a young Vancouver architectural apprentice was handed a small house project that his boss was too busy to take on. The apprentice, Ron Thom, took the simple plan and rectangular foundation that had been roughed in, and transformed it into a groundbreaking work of architecture that gained national fame. Inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra, but using local wood and paying careful attention to its verdant oceanside setting, Thom created a landmark for the new architectural movement known as West Coast Modernism. The client, Dr. Harold Copp, was himself a trailblazer, the first head of the physiology department in the University of British Columbia’s new Faculty of Medicine and a research pioneer. Generously illustrated with both vintage and contemporary architectural photography, line drawings, and photographs of the architect and residents, The Copp House is the story of a cultural landmark on the shores of Vancouver.
About the Author
Adele Weder is an architectural writer, editor, curator and correspondent for publications across Canada and abroad. She is the author and co-author of several books and monographs on Canadian architecture, including B.C. Binning and Selwyn Pullan: Photographing Mid-Century West Coast Modernism. As well as co-curating several exhibitions with the Maison de l’Architecture du Québec, she curated and coordinated the exhibition Ron Thom and the Allied Arts, which travelled to museums and galleries across Canada during 2013-2015. Adele completed her Masters of Advanced Studies in Architecture at the University of British Columbia School of Architecture in 2005. An honorary member of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, she received the RAIC President’s Award for Architectural Journalism in 2011 and the RAIC Metro Vancouver Advocacy Award in 2015. She lives in Vancouver and Haida Gwaii.
After completing his Master of Architecture degree at UC Berkeley, Michael moved to Sweden in 1989 to work as an architect. In the mid-90s Michael began photographing architecture instead, starting with two guidebooks about Stockholm architecture. Since then he has built a broad international photography practice with a primary focus on Nordic countries. In 2001 he produced a series of photographs of a 1930s chapel in Tallinn, which were awarded first prize in an international photography competition sponsored by the Museum of Estonian Architecture. In 2007 Michael was nominated for Sweden’s prestigious August Prize for his photography in the bookDen Svenska Kakelugnen (Swedish Tile Stoves). In 2013 two of his tile stove images were issued as Swedish postage stamps.