The wedge-shaped site is at the intersection of two winding streets in the Hollywood Hills. The building is conceived as a continuation of the landscape with the massing reflective of the mountainous surroundings. The film industry client imagined a space similar to that in the Godard film, Le Mépris, where Brigitte Bardot descends the exterior stair of the Casa Malaparte on the island of Capri. That imagery was the spark for the design. The program consists of a painting studio, master bedroom suite and loft. The project is strategically placed on the site so it is not in competition with the adjacent Wallace Neff house. The new building complements the existing structure by using a similar palette of materials. From the parcel, the dominant view is of the Griffith Observatory. The omnipresent Hollywood sign is above and the Los Angeles cityscape is in the distance. 


Los Feliz, CA


Painting Studio


1,500 sq ft


Completed 2003


American Architecture Award

AIA LA Award

Published, LA Times Magazine


CP Peck

The design intentionally leads one through a variety of experiences in the act of ascension. One perceives the power of the site through a series of framed views arranged along the prescribed route. Glimpses of what lies beyond build anticipation. The double-height space is the painter’s studio, partially lit by indirect light filtering in from the stairwell shaft. The oversized, 20’ tall sliding door opens to a direct view of the Observatory. From the studio, one continues up to the loft. The stairwell is sandwiched between two walls, with storefront glazing at either end, and a view of the site’s mature trees. The second level opens to a roof deck with a grand exterior stair of precast concrete planks. Upon reaching the roof terrace, one is rewarded with extraordinary views. The plateau is a stage set with the Hollywood Hills and the major icons of Los Angeles forming the background.

© Tighe Architecture 2021

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