Julius Shulman Los Angeles

Julius Shulman Los Angeles

The Birth of a Modern Metropolis

By Julius Shulman; Sam Lubell (Text by (Art/Photo Books)); Douglas Woods (Text by (Art/Photo Books))

Rizzoli International Publications, Hardcover, 9780847835485, 239pp.

Publication Date: April 5, 2011


The renowned architectural photographer shares seven decades’ worth of images of the city he loved, celebrated, and made iconic. With a life and career spanning nearly a century, Julius Shulman is credited with furthering the midcentury modernism movement through his flawless photographs of the pioneering architecture of Richard Neutra and Charles Eames, among others. While Shulman’s pictures comprise the most published images of the modernist movement, this new monograph presents many never-before-seen images on a subject closest to Shulman’s heart: Los Angeles and its environs—including Palm Springs and other suburbs. These affecting photographs show Los Angeles as a living organism, simultaneously vibrant and volatile depending on the neighborhood. This tension is apparent in Shulman’s documentation of then-emerging areas like Century City, Wilshire Boulevard, and Echo Park, as well as his studies of landmarks like the Watts Towers and Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. Many of the Los Angeles buildings and neighborhoods photographed by Shulman have since been overhauled, torn down, or otherwise altered beyond recognition, making these images some of the only lasting testaments to their existence. Selected from his personal collection as well as his official archives, the photographs included in this book represent not only lesser-known and never-before-seen material, but also some of Shulman’s own personal favorites.

About the Author
American photographer Julius Shulman s images of Californian architecture have burned themselves into the retina of the 20th century. A book on modern architecture without Shulman is inconceivable. Some of his architectural photographs, like the iconic shots of Frank Lloyd Wright s or Pierre Koenig s remarkable structures, have been published countless times. The brilliance of buildings like those by Charles Eames, as well as those of his close friend, Richard Neutra, was first brought to light by Shulman s photography. The clarity of his work demanded that architectural photography had to be considered as an independent art form. Each Shulman image unites perception and understanding for the buildings and their place in the landscape. The precise compositions reveal not just the architectural ideas behind a building s surface, but also the visions and hopes of an entire age. A sense of humanity is always present in his work, even when the human figure is absent from the actual photographs. Today, a great many of the buildings documented by Shulman have disappeared or been crudely converted, but the thirst for his pioneering images is stronger than ever before.

Praise For Julius Shulman Los Angeles

"The photographer's acute gaze captured an eclectic array of images, from the pretty girls at Lucy's lingerie shop (1948) to an early view of Los Angeles City Hall (1935), as well as new factories and their workers, Googie-style restaurants and drive-in movie theaters, supermarkets, streetscapes and schools. His vistas of unspoiled outlying areas — cows in pastures, farm laborers in fields and girls riding horses, sites of the new suburbs-to-come — document a now-vanished past." ~Los Angeles Times

“…the publisher’s fourth on the photographer and arguable its best, if only because Shulman did his most memorable work in the city. As a documentarian of modernism, specifically the work of Richard Neutra and Charles Eames, Shulman is unsurpassed, but while many of these pictures are now classics, another side of his work has been mostly overlooked. That would be the street scenes, the night photography, and the portraits that document a place not serene, clean, and beautiful, but bustling and fraught with tension—the city Shulman lived and breathed his entire life.” ~Nylon for Guys
“These photographic works show Los Angeles as a living organism both vibrant and volatile depending on the neighborhood...” ~Sartorial Life
“Now you can see the Central City of the 1930s, ‘40s and 50s through a pair of the most discerning eyes to ever get behind the lens—Julius Shulman.” ~Los Angeles Downtown News

Julius Shulman: Los Angeles: The Birth of A Modern Metropolis by Sam Lubell and Douglas Woods, presents the late, great photographer’s images of his city, many of them never published before.” ~Chicago Tribune

"Although we all miss our “Uncle Julius,” the publication of this new volume
definitely begs the question: do we really need yet another book? Julius
Shulman Los Angeles answers the question with a resounding YES...To
paraphrase Paul Cézanne’s famous comment about Claude Monet:
Shulman was only an eye—but what an eye!" ~Society of Architectural Historians