John Lautner: Modern Visionary

Today is as good a day to discuss John Lautner as any other day, especially since this is his birthday. Unfortunately, John Lautner passed away in 1994; however, many of his architectural works of art live on for all to enjoy. Originally from Michigan, John Lautner became an apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin in 1934. As a consequence, much of his earlier work was influenced by Wright. Later, Lautner developed his own unique style of architecture. Lautner moved to Southern California in 1940 to work on a few of Wright's projects. Later he decided to stay and set up his own practice.

His homes have such a unique design and appearance that many have been used on television and in movies such as: the Malin Residence or Chemosphere (Body Double, a similar style in Charlie's Angels (2000), and Current TV's set design), the Elrod Residence (Diamonds are Forever as Willard Whyte's Las Vegas home), the Sheats-Goldstein Residence (The Big Lebowski), the Garcia Residence (Lethal Weapon), and the Reiner Residence also known as Silvertop (Less Than Zero)

He is also known for Googie's Coffee Shop, which gave rise to the Googie style of architecture that epitomizes the futuristic look of space travel (some argue that the Chemosphere was the inspiration for The Jetsons). The Arango Residence situated overlooking Acapulco, Mexico is perhaps his most celebrated design.


  1. i <3 John Lautner. Thanks for the post!!

  2. Thank you! Glad you enjoyed it.

  3. I've loved Lautner's work for a long time, even before I knew who he was (i.e. seeing his incredible Chemosphere way back in the early 60's on the OUTER LIMITS (The Duplicate Man, episode).
    Great post, thanks.