This book documents the production of the cutting-edge Southern California architectural firm Rotondi Architects, led by renowned educator and designer Rotondi. Rotondi directed the California architecture school SCI-Arc from 1987 to 1997, and he cofounded, with Thom Mayne, the renowned architecture firm Morphosis. Rotondi and Mayne are the West Coast high priests of cubism in contemporary design. This style articulates the most complex possible interiors and exteriors that budgets will allow by way of folded plates, fractured structures, broken perimeters, splayed walls, and sliced volumes. Paradoxically, like the early 20th-century cubist paintings of Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, this style also conveys both the absence and the presence of gravity suspended in light. Each commission is summarized in pictures and text, which makes for an effective narration of the firm's work over the past 20 years. Commissions include a clutch of private residences around the country, a few upscale restaurants in the Los Angeles area, half a dozen nonprofit centers, and one school of architecture at Prairie View A&M School of Architecture, TX. As the book is an advertisement for the firm's work, it belongs only in architecture libraries or in art libraries in Southern California.
Peter S. Kaufman