Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Wilshire's Columbia Savings Building Will Soon Be Just A Memory

Chris Nichols has the latest shot of the Columbia Savings Building's demolition on Wilshire (above). It will soon be no more.

The L.A. Conservancy explains why the mid-century building -- designed by Irving Shapiro and completed in 1965 -- was worth saving:

With its bold design, expansive use of glass for transparency, and integrated program of abstract art, the Columbia Savings building is an exceptional example of national postwar banking trends. Displaying the influence of New Formalism, the building’s modernist form and symmetry represent a reinterpretation of the classically inspired banks of the turn-of-the-twentieth century.

Exceptional signage includes two sculptural pylons soaring eighty-five-feet tall. Visible from great distances, their incredible height marks the evolution of building signage in response to Los Angeles’ auto-oriented society.

The bank's design integrates significant works of abstract art, including a 45-foot-long brass screen-waterfall sculptural fountain by local artist Taki and a 1,300-square-foot dalle-de-verre (faceted glass) stained-glass skylight by acclaimed artist Roger Darricarrere that crowns the interior light well.

Video of the demolition, from the Conservancy:

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