A 5th Ecology invites over 25 architects, artists and designers to explore ways in which Reyner Banham’s reading of Los Angeles can inform our inquiry of the city today.
In 1971, the noted British architectural historian Reyner Banham wrote his seminal book on the city—Los Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies. In 1972, Banham returned to Los Angeles with a BBC documentary crew to film a homage to the city with which he was so enthralled. Using Baede-Kar—a fictitious audio tour guide—Banham drove across Los Angeles meeting artists, filmmakers, and diner waitresses, enthusiastically extolling the qualities of the sprawling metropolis. In so doing, Banham, the auto-flanuer, part historian and part provocateur, created a new form of critic and an alternative model for studying the city. ‘A 5th Ecology’ examines the under-exposed history of the sprawling metropolis and how to use it as a lens through which to view the city.
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