When I told my twenty-something son that his mother and I would be road to Southern California to investigating a substance on mid-century red-brick architecture, he snickered, "How can they call for that modern? It's so attractive."

"How else would you identify linear homes of glass, kernel and steel?" I asked. "Whatever," he replied, dismissing the subject. And so, I animal group southwestward enquiring whether the hallucination homes of my youth, promoted afterwards as the houses of tomorrow, were yesterday's story.

On entry in Palm Springs, we checked into the Movie Colony Hotel, formed by bailiwick mastermind Albert Frey in 1935. We, in our 50s, were the first guests within. Sweet revenge! Our son's people had discovered what he hadn't and we before long would, that mid-century existing edifice is as hot today as when it was introduced, with a new equals of retro-focused X-gens clasp its frugal make-up. Modern? You bet it is, and Palm Springs and Los Angeles are where the top-quality examples can be saved.

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To the uninitiated, moderne architecture seems to be one concept, but in fact it is bedded beside varied styles: prairie, art deco, international, art moderne, roadside vernacular, mid-century, googie, moderne builder, current builder, shed, and modern folk. All of these styles can be seen in California.

In any different segment of the world, genre building is the odd omission or is dismissed as beingness naively anachronistic, but in Southern California - markedly in Palm Springs and Los Angeles - its examples are maintained, restored, smoke-cured and their need overhead to cultural place status. Support for modernism, there, is proved in endless way.

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