Save the Date: Los Angeles Conference, Oct. 2-6, 2019

In his article “Organic Architecture Looks at Modern Architecture,” which appeared in Architectural Record in 1952, Wright bemoaned the fact that “modern architecture,” although an “offspring of Organic-architecture,” had begun to dominate the American scene. In terms of the private house, this may have been most evident in Southern California, now widely celebrated as a breeding ground of postwar modernism. Yet Wright’s continuing influence in the region was profound. While not always adhering strictly to his principles of “organic” design, many of Wright’s ideas permeated the postwar Southern California landscape. Much has been written concerning his work and that of his immediate disciples and followers during the pre-WWII era, yet Wright’s legacy after the war is much more poorly understood. The Conservancy’s 2019 annual conference in Los Angeles offers an opportunity to explore the broad postwar nature of Wright’s impact on the region.

The 2019 conference, Wright’s Influence in Postwar Southern California, will focus on Wright’s work and recent attempts to preserve his legacy as well as the influence he had on other architects and popular culture during the post-WWII era. Proposals for papers and panelist participation might range from recent attempts to conserve houses by Wright and related architects, to an exploration of the relationship of his work to that of his disciples, students, offspring, and second- and third-generation designers and architects that followed, including John Lautner, Lloyd Wright, Harwell Hamilton Harris, Whitney Smith, Buff and Hensman, and the early work of Gehry and Walsh, among others. The development of the California ranch house and the concept of indoor-outdoor living as well as the coffee shop and the so-called Googie style should also be considered.

Proposals should present fresh material and/or interpretations and should be cast in an analytical rather than descriptive framework. They should be submitted as an abstract of no more than one page, single-spaced, with the author’s name at the top. The text should concisely describe the focus and scope of the presentation. The proposal should be accompanied by a one-page biography/curriculum vitae that includes author’s full name, affiliation (if applicable), mailing address, email address and telephone number. Please also note audio-visual needs.

Send all proposals to Ken Breisch, conference speakers chair and Associate Professor in the Heritage Conservation Program at the University of Southern California, at

Proposals must be received no later than February 12, 2019. Notification will be sent by April 1.

The conference program will be announced and registration will begin in June. Updates may be found on the annual conference page.

Click to download the Call for Papers

Posted on November 1, 2018

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