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Behold the new Emerson College “complex” (s0-called) for television, film, and advertising production studies on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, designed by Thom Mayne of the firm Morphosis, which has been reviled on this site before for its techno-narcissistic archi-stunts. This one is as if the Jolly Green Giant  dropped a crate of seltzer bottles in the parking lot of the local beverage center. Note how nicely it blends in with the shitty strip-mall buildings on the block — is that a pole-dancing bar in the lower left? The building is being touted as “futuristic.” That’s rich. If anything it’s a sentimental glance into the recent past of its designers. The future will actually look nothing like this.

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About James Howard Kunstler

View all posts by James Howard Kunstler
James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency and the four-book series of World Made By Hand novels, set in a post economic crash American future. His most recent book is Living in the Long Emergency; Global Crisis, the Failure of the Futurists, and the Early Adapters Who Are Showing Us the Way Forward. Jim lives on a homestead in Washington County, New. York, where he tends his garden and communes with his chickens.

8 Responses to “April 2014”

  1. Being There April 2, 2014 at 12:19 pm #

    Behold the gloriously ugly. Looks like they are trying to be too clever by half. Combining the box with the little module idea.

    Hmmm brilliant, absolutely brilliant…..

  2. Neon Vincent April 3, 2014 at 10:14 am #

    Let’s put the building inside a proscenium arch that doubles as the frame around a screen. That way, no one will forget that this is a center for television and film studies. Yeah, great advertising, that.

  3. Illoura April 3, 2014 at 11:11 am #

    Trying not to spoof morning coffee…
    I am amazed this ‘glass house’ (is it really glass?!) even made it past California earthquake regulations… would be great to have a live-cam pointed at it so we can watch the results of their next 5+ earthquake.

    On the other hand, I understand that some industries NEED to feed into the idea that we’re on our way to the next super-tech world, and I guess this kind of advertising works.
    I feel for the students going into debt for these degrees in superficial technologies. (Disney alone is purported to be/have been letting at least 700 animators go (previous digital arts students).
    Where will all the film investors and advertisers be when the stock market finally heads down, and businesses begin shutting their doors? Maybe I’m overly cynical but I can’t help but wonder when those days arrive… all the students out of waiter jobs, getting together to create rolling documentaries of how the great empire is falling… using handheld personal cams and youtube.

  4. Greyghost April 14, 2014 at 11:25 am #

    That is one ugly building. It almost hurts the eyes to look at it. Just think of how the money spent to build it could’ve been used to build something energy friendly and with a little eye appeal. You’ve out done yourself this month fore sure ! However next month isn’t that far away.

  5. JimN April 21, 2014 at 1:39 pm #

    No self-respecting ivy would EVER climb this college building!

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  6. Warren April 22, 2014 at 11:40 pm #

    When I saw it was built by Emerson College I first thought they had built that POS in Boston, which would have pissed me off, as such dreck does not belong there, But then I saw it was in LA, and that place has so many eyesores that one more will not make a difference, especially since LA will probably not survive long into the “Long Emergency”

  7. hiruitnguyse April 28, 2014 at 2:42 pm #

    Wait till it starts leaking…

  8. wellnoted January 11, 2015 at 7:41 pm #

    this is the musical equivalent of “noise”. random elements of curve and texture for their own sake … someone mentioned rain!

    mayne has lots of little droppings like this all over los angeles (as evidenced by morpoph’s former location in venice). mayne always appeared to be in competition with gehry, whose own home is a tremendous badly-maintained eyesore of aging plywood, random globs of leaking class corners, and chainlink fence of no function beyond inflicting retinal pain- in a small neighborhood of santa monica. years later, he bought a perfectly charming tiny cottage next door, tore it down, and continued the tracks of an SWAT team-proof gate to create the block’s first compound.

    busloads of arch school students are brought in to further annoy the neighbors as they gaze in slack-jaw wonder …