Thinking By Hand

A selection of Architect Frederick Fisher‘s  watercolors—which he often creates while developing designs for his houses, galleries, and other commissions— is on display through May 22 at Edward Cella Art + Architecture, 6018 Wilshire Blvd, LA, across the street from LACMA.  Minimal yet sensual, these abstractions of a house he is designing for himself in Ojai and of recent academic buildings explore the relationship of mass and void. His buildings grow from these soft blocks of pigment, and the subtlety of the wash expresses the care with which he crafts his forms. Some are a leap into the unknown: a project titled Imaginary Museums was sketched during his 2008 fellowship at the American Academy in Rome. A still-life by Morandi inspires a museum that showcases his work, and abandoned buildings are given new roles. The monuments of Rome are re-examined with a fresh eye, in homage to Robert Venturi’s Complexity and Contradiction. As an overture to these tiny, evocative drawings, the first room is hung with digital renderings of the proposed museums. This is Fisher’s first gallery show and on Saturday May 1, 1-3pm, he will discuss his ideas with Frances Anderton, host of DnA: Design and Architecture on KCRW.

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