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The 1931 Aluminaire House and Palm Springs

Tickets Sold at Door Today

Annenberg Theater, Palm Springs Art Museum, 101 N. Museum Way, Palm Springs, CA 92262

$12, 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Category: !Tickets Still Available, @Palm Springs, AIA Continuing Education, Presentation, Talk, @Sold at Door

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Full Details

The 1931 Aluminaire House arrived with great fanfare to Palm Springs on Valentine's Day, 2017, just in time for Modernism Week.  Long-term plans were to include Aluminaire in the new park, but the City ultimately declined providing space.  However, good news is coming and there are 2 excellent proposals under consideration.  It's hoped that by the time of this presentation, specific details can be released.  It's been a long time!   

In his presentation, Alan Hess will discuss how important the Aluminaire House is to Palm Springs.  Designed by Albert Frey and A. Lawrence Kocher, it's one of the earliest examples of modern architecture in America.  Erected in less than 10 days for an exhibition, it was the first house to be constructed solely from light steel and aluminum. It was also one of the few structures to represent the American modern movement at the Exhibition of Modern Architecture, curated by Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson at the Museum of Modern Art in 1932.   

While Albert Frey is mostly known today for his contribution to the desert modern aesthetic, his East Coast work with Aluminaire and the Kocher Canvas Week-end House helped formulate the refined architecture that he went on to produce in Palm Springs for over 5 decades.  Frey was a pioneer of modern architecture, both for his technological ingenuity and sensitivity to the landscape.   

Hess is an architect, an architectural critic since 1986 for the San Jose Mercury News, historian, educator, preservationist, and author of over 20 architectural books. Hess is a preeminent authority on Modern architecture and urbanism in the mid-twentieth century.


This event qualifies for 1 AIA/CES Learning Units (LU).

Things to Know

This event is for ages 12 and older.
The stairs to the entrance of the Annenberg Theater are located behind the Annenberg Theater Box Office, adjacent to the Palm Springs Art Museum’s North Parking Lot.
There is ample free public parking in the city-owned garage directly across from the museum’s north parking lot.
Handicap parking is available. This event is wheelchair accessible.
The organizer of this event is Modernism Week

Event Check-in Location

Annenberg Theater, Palm Springs Art Museum, 101 N. Museum Way, Palm Springs, CA 92262

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Photo Credits: 1931 Aluminaire House/, Albert Frey on Aluminaire balcony/, Kocher Canvas Week-end House, 1934, Kocher-Samson Building, 1934, Palm Springs, Guthrie House, 1935, Palm Springs, Photographer Jeff Durkin



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