Environmental Design Archives
Winfield Scott Wellington (1897-1979) was born in Houston, Texas in 1897. He received his primary and secondary education in New Orleans completing his first two years of undergraduate education at Tulane University, then attending the Georgia School of Technology for one year. In 1918 Wellington began studying architecture at UC Berkeley; receiving a Master of Arts degree in 1922, and a Graduate in Architecture degree in 1923. His graduate thesis reflected his belief in the importance of self-expression through design, and his love of objects in the personal environment.
At the start of his professional career in the early 1920s, Wellington worked for John Galen Howard, Warren C. Perry, and Ashley & Evers in San Francisco. In 1928 Wellington became the firm designer at the architecture office of Eldridge T. Spencer. Two years later, Wellington began his own practice, which focused on residences. He became Professor of Design at UC Berkeley in 1937.
Wellington began designing exhibitions in 1939, at the request of UC Berkeley's renowned anthropology professor, Dr. Alfred Kroeber. Following his success at aiding in the preparation of native artifacts in the Andean Room of the Federal Pavillion of the Golden Gate International Exhibition, many universities and public galleries requested his exhibition designs. Moreover, Wellington demonstrated his skills as an architect and craftsman in various Elizabethan, Spanish, and French Louis XV and IV period room museum installations. He served as chairman of the Art Gallery of UC Berkeley's Department of Decorative Art from 1946-1962. Despite budget constraints Wellington used this position to transform the Gallery's crude interior into a site of rich cultural experience with modern innovations.
In 1948, Wellington began teaching at UC Berkeley's Department of Decorative Art, precursor to the Department of Design, College of Environmental Design. In his classes he encouraged students to scrutinize and handle objects from his large personal collection.
Wellington's architectural designs were primarily Bay Area, residences, though he also designed the Kinteel Trading Post at Window Rock, Arizona. During his career Wellington participated in many design exhibitions, hosted by UC Berkeley, Stanford University, and various San Francisco museums. In 1938 the Northern California Chapter of the American Institute of Architects selected Wellington's designs for an exhibit held at the San Francisco Museum of Art. The Architectural League of New York also honored Wellington in 1941, during their touring exhibition of Northern California architecture. Wellington retired in 1965 to a house he had designed for himself, at which he led sessions for students and Alumni dedicated to understanding the nature of beautifully designed objects.
Sources: University of California: In Memoriam Wellington, Winfield Scott. A Center of Recreation: A Thesis in Partial Satisfaction for the Degree of Graduate in Architecture. University of California, Berkeley: Department of Design. May 1, 1923.
From the guide to the Winfield Scott Wellington collection, 1931-1968, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Walter Guthrie attended the Jewish Farm School in Doylestown, PA, and served in the Military from 1956-1958 surveying the East German Border. In 1958, he graduated from Oregon State in horticulture and design and went to work for the landscape firm of Osmundson & Staley, where Staley met his wife, Lisa, also a landscape architect. The couple married in 1960. Guthrie then left Osmundson to work for Thomas Church in 1961 (replacing Casey Kawamoto). After working more than a decade (1961 to 1973) with Church, Guthrie joined the firm which became Johnson, Leffingwell and Guthrie. This firm split up in 1980 and each partner opened individual practices. Prior to his death, Guthrie was interviewed by the Cultural Landscape Foundation as one of four Bay Area "landscape legendaries." Guthrie died in 2006 at the age of 74.
From the guide to the Walter Guthrie records, 1980-2006, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Mai Arbegast was born in San Jose, CA in 1922. Her father Gijiu Kitazawa and his brother Buemon started the Kitazawa Seed Company and nursery in 1916. When they split the business a year later, Arbegast's father moved the seed brokerage to a downtown San Jose storefront and sold seeds wholesale and retail, adding his own line of Asian vegetables. This became the main seed source for the growing population of Japanese tenant farmers in California and Oregon. In an interview Mai recalled, "I spent much of my early life in boots stomping on particular tomatoes and collecting the seed for further crosses."
In 1942, Arbegast's family was packed off to the Heart Mountain internment camp. They got a sponsor and clearance to move to Michigan until World War II ended. In 1945, the business was restarted at which time Kitazawa began mail-order sales and shipping.
Arbegast graduated from Oberlin College in 1945 and went on to earn a M.S. degree in Ornamental Horticulture from Cornell University in 1949 as well as a M.S. in Landscape Architecture from Berkeley in 1953. Following graduation, she taught both full- and part-time at Berkeley in the Department of Landscape Architecture from 1953 to 1967. During that time she maintained a part-time professional practice. In 1967, she gave up teaching and began a full-time professional practice that continued through 2003. During her time as a teacher of plant materials, horticulture, and planting design she inspired and influenced generations of students.
In her career, Arbegast specialized in the area of planting design and was involved in the design of large scale residential gardens/estates, wineries, in addition to commercial, educational and public projects. Her notable projects include the Hearst Castle planting restoration, California Palace of the Legion of Honor renovation, restoration projects at the Oakland Museum and Scripps College, U.C. Davis Arboretum, Trefethen Vineyard, Shanel Estate, the Great Highway renovation with Michael Painter, and the U.C. Berkeley Master Plan with ROMA Design Group. She frequently worked as a horticultural consultant to architects including, MBTW/Turnbull Associates, and other landscape architects such as Richard Haag, Lawrence Halprin, and large firms such as SWA and EDAW.
In addition to her professional practice, Arbegast has been a member and trustee of many boards and foundations. These include: U.C. Berkeley Botanical Garden, Filoli Center Founding Committee, San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission Design Review Board, Saratoga Horticulture Foundation, American Association of Botanic Gardens and Arboreta, and the Strybing Arboretum Society. She also served on the City of Berkeley Planning Commission, Board of Adjustments, and Waterfront Advisory Committee.
Arbegast played a key role in the gift of the Blake Garden to the U.C. Berkeley Department of Landscape Architecture and the transfer of Filoli Gardens to the National Trust. She was largely responsible for the donation of Beatrix Farrand's Reef Point Collection and Endowment to the U.C. Berkeley Department of Landscape Architecture.
Source: Curriculum Vitae , Mai Kitazawa Arbegast Collection, (2006-11), Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design. University of California, Berkeley.
From the guide to the Mai Kitazawa Arbegast collection, 1933-2003, 1980-2000, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Maunsell Van Rensselaer (1897-1972)
Maunsell Van Rensselaer was born in Los Angeles, California on May 13, 1897. As a direct descendant of the prominent Holland-Dutch family who established the colony of Rensselaerwyck (now Rensselaer, New York), he was the fifth of nine children to James Taylor Van Rensselaer and Agnes Sarah Bradley Van Rensselaer. He was named after his grandfather, Rev. Maunsell Van Rensselaer, an Episcopal minister in Albany, New York. He married Eleanor Olmsted White on May 14, 1921. They had two children, Cortlandt Van Rensselaer and Patricia Louise Van Rensselaer Wilson.
Van Rensselaer grew up and attended school in Fallbrook, California. He enlisted in the United States Army in 1916 during World War I, and was stationed at an army airfield in San Diego, California. In recognition of his skill, he was awarded a commission as Second Lieutenant and was sent to the University of California, Berkeley for pre-flight training. Then he was assigned to March Field, near Riverside, California, where he received pilot training. While at March Field, he was introduced to his future wife Eleanor Olmstead White.
Following his release from the army, Van Rensselaer resumed his studies at the University of California, Berkeley, where both he and Eleanor attended. He was a member of Alpha Kappa Lambda and Phi Delta Kappa. He graduated in 1923 with a major in physical education. His great interest was in botany and forestry, but his family convinced him that this field would not provide a good living. This resulted in his employment with the City of Berkeley Recreation Department. He also served as Dean of Boys for Berkeley High School from 1923 to 1925.
During this time, Van Rensselaer and Eleanor were given the opportunity to establish the Berkeley summer camp on the Tuolomne River near Yosemite. After managing this camp for several summers, they left Berkeley and founded Lokoya Lodge, a summer resort on Mt. Veeder in Napa County. Van Rensselaer served as Treasurer, Managing Director, and President of the Lodge from 1926 to 1933. He also formed the Mt. Veeder Improvement Association, in which he also served as its president. After Lokoya Lodge failed financially due to the Depression, Van Rensselaer decided to return to his original botanical career interest.
Van Rensselaer then worked for what is now called the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, serving initially in 1934 as Assistant Director, and was then later appointed to Director from 1936 to 1950. He also was instrumental in having the redwood adopted as California's official state tree in 1937. Serving as its chairman from 1943 to 1945, Van Rensselaer was a member of the Santa Barbara Board of Park Commissioners for many years, as well as a member of the Royal Horticultural Society, the Mexican Botanical Society, and the American Association of Botanic Gardens and Arboretums. In 1943, he was awarded the Gold Medal of the Garden Club of America as the co-author of Ceanothus.
After relocating to Los Altos, California in 1950, Van Rensselaer and nurseryman Ray Hartman co-founded the Saratoga Horticultural Foundation, a non-profit institution located on several acres of land donated by Hartman near the town center of Saratoga, California. The Foundation selected desirable plants, often from mutations, and propagated these with grafting in order to create identical specimens. Several dozen of these plant varieties were patented. Many of the long lines of identical trees, which today shade the streets of the Silicon Valley, were propagated at the Foundation.
While at the Saratoga Horticultural Foundation, Van Rensselaer served as director from 1950 to 1971. Among other accomplishments, he was president for the International Shade Tree Conference in the early 1960s and a member of the Advisory Council of the California Foundation for Horticultural Research and the Arboretum Committee at the University of California, Santa Cruz. In 1965, Van Rensselaer was named to the Horticultural Hall of Fame.
Van Rensselaer authored Trees of Santa Barbara, a profusely illustrated book, which was published in 1940 by the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, Inc. He prepared a revised and enlarged edition in 1948. His major botanical publication, Ceanothus, was written in conjunction with Howard E. McMinn, professor of botany at Mills College. It was also published by the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden in 1942. In addition, Van Rensselaer authored hundreds of articles for horticultural publications and made countless presentations on botanical subjects.
Maunsell Van Rensselaer died on August 15, 1972 in Santa Cruz, California.
Sources: Collection file, Environmental Design Archives.
From the guide to the Maunsell Van Rensselaer collection, 1920-1970, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
A.A. (Alexander Aimwell) Cantin was born March 4, 1874 and died ca. 1964. He built a number of building on the campus of the College of Marin, including the Science Building, the first permanent building on campus ( http://www.marin.cc.ca.us/lrc/photos/archive2.html) . He is possibly best know for being the lead architect (while working at the firm of Miller and Pflueger) on the twenty-six-story, Coast Division Building of the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company at 140 New Montgomery Street, San Francisco, CA. He is also known for the number of movie theaters he designed in the 1920s and 1930s. He was received his architectural license in 1901, and was a member of the AIA, with over forty-eight years of active practice. Of lifelong interest to him was the design of decorative columns. He was awarded patents for several of his column designs.
A.M. (Alexander Mackenzie) Cantin, A.A.'s son, was born ca. January 21, 1909/1912 and died ca. 1972. He attended UC Berkeley's School of Architecture, and was granted an architectural license in 1945. He entered into practice with his father in 1948, in the firm Cantin, Cantin, and Edward B. Page. Collaborating after WWII, they designed schools, military housing and hospitals, and other primarily commercial structures throughout the California Bay Area.
From the guide to the A.A. and A.M. Cantin collection, 1933-1977, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Stafford Jory was born in Stockton on August 24, 1889 to parents of English background. He moved to Berkeley in 1907, graduated high school, and entered UC Berkeley, where he became one of John Galen Howard's first students. After receiving his B.S. in 1912, he continued under Howard's tutelage, earning a Masters in 1913 and the discontinued Graduate in Architecture degree in 1914. In these early years he often worked creating beautiful color renderings for Howard. These degrees earned Jory a professor's position at Berkeley; however, World War I interrupted this development, and he ended up teaching artillery school in Virginia until the end of the war. His brother Arthur Jory also attended the Berkeley Architecture Program and they worked on a number of projects together.
After the war, he married Grace Weeks, a former classmate in architecture, and returned to his teaching position at Berkeley where he would teach until his retirement in 1956. During these years, he was also a practicing architect. He was responsible for a number of residences in the Berkeley area, including the Alpha Delta Phi Fraternity House, Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority House, and the house of his friend Farnham Griffiths. His professional relationship with Howard continued throughout his career as they collaborated on many university buildings, including Wheeler Hall, Hilgard Hall, parts of Doe Library, Edwards Track Stadium, and the School of Law built in 1950.
In addition to architecture, Jory was also active in floriculture, where he found international recognition for his work in the hybridization of geraniums and the iris. His "William Mohr Crossing" led to the revolutionary development of the tall bearded garden iris. His other love was the photography of landscapes, gardens, and architecture. He was a member of the American Iris Society, the Aril Societe Internationale, and the Photographic Club of America. Jory passed away in 1968.
Goodman, M.A., Jeans, R. W., & Perry, W.C. "Stafford Lelean Jory." Photocopy - No other information, p. 52.
From the guide to the Stafford L. Jory collection, 1904-1960, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Located in the southwestern corner of San Francisco, St. Francis Wood is a prime example of the "Garden City" ideals of neighborhood planning popular at the turn of the 20th century. This neighborhood is of particular interest because it encompasses designs by many well-known Bay Area architects and landscape architects. Unlike many residential developments that offered only stock plans, St. Francis Wood developers encouraged houses designed by prominent architects for specific clients. The foresight of developer Duncan McDuffie provided the neighborhood with a visual cohesiveness that remains to this day.
The land on which St. Francis Wood was established once belonged to the Mission Dolores. However, when the Mexican government abolished the mission system in 1846, the land was granted to Mexican citizen Jose de Jesus Noe as part of a much larger piece of land called the Rancho San Miguel (4,443 acres). However, with the influx of American settlers during California's gold rush, Noe began selling off parts of his Rancho in 1852. Prior to development, this part of the city west of Mt. Sutro, Twin Peaks and Mt. Davidson was primarily sand dunes. The only uses in the area were racetracks, roadhouses, the Alms House (later Laguna Honda Hospital) and a Spring Valley Water Company flume. Some farmers rented parcels of land for growing vegetable crops, making the long trip over Twin Peaks to the markets in San Francisco. In 1880, mining magnate Adolph Sutro purchased the Rancho San Miguel and proceeded to plant thousands of trees on the land, which he kept as a nature preserve until his death in 1898. The land remained held up in a complicated probate battle over Sutro's estate until 1909.
Developers who had been successful in establishing residential subdivisions in the East Bay after the 1906 earthquake and fire, saw in the Sutro property opportunities for providing the same types of neighborhoods in San Francisco. Homebuyers had flocked to these East Bay developments, which had been modeled on the "Garden City." With origins in England, the concept of the Garden City proposed a weaving together of urban and rural, city and country. It called for large, park-like neighborhoods of single-family detached houses, with large landscaped lots set along curving streets and with no commercial buildings. This paradigm integrated easily into the larger City Beautiful movement, which at a city scale called for grand boulevards adorned with neoclassical monuments to cut through the city and to connect a system of open spaces. The assumption of these movements was that these types of cities and neighborhoods would be healthier and safer than crowded cities of grid streets and apartment buildings.
A strong supporter of the Garden City movement was Duncan McDuffie, a developer who had great success with his residential developments based on these ideals: the Northbrae and Claremont neighborhoods in the East Bay. McDuffie's personality was certainly suited to bringing nature into the neighborhood. He was twice president of the Sierra Club, was involved in establishing the state park system, and was a leader in the Save the Redwoods campaign. McDuffie's object with St. Francis Wood was to create "residence park," a neighborhood that not only had all the benefits of the open landscape of the East Bay but also had proximity to downtown. In 1910, McDuffie along with his business partner Joseph Mason purchased 175 acres of the Sutro estate to realize this ambition. With his eye toward quality, McDuffie hired some of the most well-known architects and landscape architects of the time to establish the layout and infrastructure of the neighborhood. The Olmsted Brothers firm laid out the curving street plan as well as the neighborhood parks. John Galen Howard acted as the first supervising architect and also designed the entrance gates, the Circle fountain and other neighborhood infrastructure. Lot buyers could hire any architect to design their houses, but they had to follow strict design guidelines, and the supervising architect had final approval.
Despite the initial popularity of these Garden City neighborhoods in other areas around the Bay, lot sales in St. Francis Wood were nearly nonexistent in the years 1914-1919. These stagnant years nearly drove Mason-McDuffie to turn their backs on the original intent of the neighborhood. Of the many factors keeping buyers away, WWI especially slowed new home sales and made building materials costly. In addition, the lack of transportation options to this region of San Francisco made its location less than desirable. It was faster to reach downtown San Francisco by ferry from the East Bay than to reach it by streetcar from St. Francis Wood. Consequently, McDuffie and several other developers with land west of Twin Peaks lobbied fiercely for the construction of a streetcar tunnel under Twin Peaks. Their demands were met with the opening of the Twin Peaks tunnel in 1918.
Once the Twin Peaks tunnel opened, lot sales in St. Francis Wood were brisk. In contrast to many developments in this area that often did not involve architects, St. Francis Wood boasted architectural designs of many well-known architects such as Julia Morgan, William Merchant and Gertrude Comfort Morrow and the landscape designs of Harry Shepherd. Henry H. Gutterson acted as supervising architect for most of these later homes, but many architects did not veer far from the preferred style: revivals of traditional English, French and Italian idioms. The St. Francis Wood Home Association, formed by Duncan McDuffie in 1912, took over the maintenance of the neighborhood's parks and boulevards. In 1926, 400 of the 557 lots had houses, and by the 1930s most of the lots in St. Francis Wood were sold. Today, much of Duncan McDuffie's original intent remains. St. Francis Wood is recognizably different from many of the neighborhoods that surround it. Its wide lots, curving streets and lush landscaping make the neighborhood a retreat from the rush of urban life.
Sources: Barnhill, Donna. San Francisco's Residential Parks: St. Francis Wood. San Francisco: CityGuides tour script. Beresford, Larry. "Neighborhood Historian Sheds New Light on the Image of Jose Noe." Noe Valley Voice September 2001. Brandi, Richard. Images of America: San Francisco's West Portal Neighborhoods. San Francisco: Arcadia, 2005. Weinstein, David. "Signature Style: Duncan McDuffie. Natural neighborhoods: visionary developer created elegant urban 'residential parks'." San Francisco Chronicle, 7 February 2004. Western Neighborhoods Project. St. Francis Wood. 5 February 2004. http://www.outsidelands.org/sfw.html (viewed on 22 Sep 2005)
From the guide to the St. Francis Wood virtual collection, 1912-1946, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Richard A. Vignolo, (1927- )
Richard A. Vignolo was born on August 24, 1927. Raised on a ranch in Stockton, his love of the landscape came from his childhood surroundings, and his grandfather's passion for plants; Vignolo, however, knew early on that he did not wish to be a farmer. He attended California's Stockton Junior College until 1945, and though he was briefly interested in studying architecture, he quickly found his love in landscape architecture. In 1946, he began studying landscape architecture at the University of California, Berkeley graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Landscape Architecture in 1950. His professors included Robert Royston, Burt Litton, and Leland Vaughan. The summer following his graduation, Vignolo worked for the Berkeley Planning Commission.
In the fall of 1950, Vignolo continued his design education at Harvard's Graduate School of Design (GSD) earning his Master of Landscape Architecture degree in 1953. While in graduate school, he worked for Chamber & Moriece, a landscape architecture practice located in Cambridge, Massachusetts (1952-1953) as well as occasionally working part-time between 1951 and 1953 for San Francisco-based Lawrence Halprin & Associates.
Following graduation from the GSD, Vignolo was employed by the United States Army, 30th Engineers, Topographical Group in California and Alaska until 1955, when he became a full-time employee of Halprin's firm. In 1956, Vignolo received the Charles Eliot Traveling Fellowship from Harvard, the highest honor the GSD's Department of Landcape Architecture can award to a graduate from its program, which allowed him to travel throughout Europe.
Upon his return, he continued with Lawrence Halprin & Associates. While in the Halprin office, Vignolo was integral to many projects, including the detailing for Oakbrook, Illinois' Old Orchard Shopping Center; Akron, Ohio's Cascade Plaza; and Minneapolis, Minnesota's Nicollett Mall. Vignolo became as associate at the firm in 1957, and Design Principal and Vice President in 1964.
In October of 1972, Vignolo established his own practice Richard A. Vignolo, Landscape Architect. A registered landscape architect in California, Washington, and Texas, Vignolo provided a complete range of design services throughout the United States, including residential, commercial, governmental, educational, recreational, religious, and even funerary designs.
His more notable projects include the Loggia of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco; Dallas's North Park Shopping Center Expansion, Office Park, and National Bank; Fargo's Broadway Mall; San Francisco Zoo's Primate, Elk, and Wolf Exhibits; and Weyerhaeuser Headquarters' Executive Roof Garden in Tacoma, Washington. He built strong relationships with his architects and clients, often doing work for their personal homes in addition to their large commercial projects. In addition to working with them professionally, Vignolo acted as a design consultant for the residential landscapes of architects Edward Charles Bassett, Walter Wisznia, and John Vrtiak.
Walker, Peter, and Melanie Simo, Invisible Gardens: The Search for Modernism in the American Landscape, MIT Press, 1996.
From the guide to the Inventory of the Richard A. Vignolo Collection, 1948-2003 (bulk 1973-2000), 1948-2003, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Jacob (Jack) Robbins was born in 1923 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and earned his degree in architecture from Harvard in 1953. From 1952 to 1955, he operated Robbins & Associates with offices in San Francisco and Boston, where he designed a number of residences. From 1955-1961, he designed a residence with Goetz and Hansen Architects, a number of elementary schools around the Bay Area with John Lyon Reid and Partners (including the Santa Margarita School, which received a Citation from the American Association of School Administrators), and eight buildings with Gerald M. McCue & Associates, including the Cyclotron Building (which won the Award of Merit from the Bay Region Honor Awards in 1962), the Health Physics Laboratory at Lawrence Laboratory at UC Berkeley, Metallurgical Laboratories at Lockheed in Sunnyvale, and various engineering and laboratories in Richmond, California.
In 1955 Robbins designed his own home in the Oakland hills, which won an Award of Merit from AIA/Sunset Western Home, was written up in Architectural Record in 1962, and was featured in Architectural Guide to the Bay Area in 1962 and 1973.
In 1961 Robbins re-opened Jack Robbins & Associates in Oakland, California. From 1961-1967 Jack Robbins & Associates designed a number of high-end residences and apartment buildings in the Oakland hills, Berkeley, Marin County and Squaw Valley. In 1967, Robbins joined Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, based in San Francisco, for a series of projects until 1972. His designs with the firm include San Jose City College Master Plan, Evergreen Valley College Master Plan and Phase I Buildings in San Jose, Feather River College Master Plan and Phase I Buildings in Quincy, and Mills College Residence and Dining Halls in Oakland.
In 1972, Robbins became the Director of City Planning and Community Development for the City of Fremont, California. During his four years as Director he oversaw more than a dozen major projects, including the Civic Center Master Plan, Open Space Plan, Seismic Safety Plan, BART Area Plan, and the Walnut Knolls, Northpointe and Mission Valley neighborhoods.
Robbins founded Robbins and Ream, Architects, together with James Ream in 1977 in San Francisco. From 1977 to 1983, they worked on residences, offices buildings, colleges, parking structures, and a church. Their designs include Third Baptist Church Center in San Francisco, World College West Master Plan and Phase I Buildings in Marin County, and Oakmead Terraces Office Buildings in Sunnyvale, which was featured in Architectural Review as well as Architectural Record in 1979 and 1978, respectively.
Robbins returned to solo work in 1984 under the company name Jack Robbins FAIA Architect, Urban Design, Inc. From 1984 to 2007, Robbins designed more homes in the East Bay, a home in Los Angeles, two condominium buildings in San Francisco, Crocker Bank in Sonora, and a biomedical research building in Zimbabwe. He became a Fellow of the AIA in 1975.
Robbins retired in 1993.
CV provided by J. Robbins
Biographical listing in 1962 American Architects Directory
Biographical listing in 1970 American Architects Directory
From the guide to the Jack Robbins Collection, 1955-2007, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Jack Stafford, a landscape architect was born in 1921 in Casper, Wyoming. He attended the University of Wyoming, studying premed for three years before joining the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II. As a pilot, Stafford flew numerous missions in B-24s in the South Pacific and earned a Silver Star medal and seven separate oak leaf clusters for his outstanding service. After leaving the Air Corps in 1944, he briefly became a pilot for Western Airlines and moved to California with his wife, Bonnie.
Stafford soon enrolled at the University of California at Berkeley, graduating with a B.S. in Landscape Architecture in 1950. He began working with Thomas Church and took on managemnet of Church’s projects on the San Mateo penninsula south of San Francisco. He later established his own “Peninsula” practice focusing on residential designs for homes in Palo Alto, Woodside and Hillsborough, among other cities
Mr. Stafford was a member of the Architectural and Site Review Board in Woodside. He earned numerous awards for his work, including several design awards from landscaping contractors. Jack Stafford died January 27, 1998 at his home in Woodside
San Francisco Chronicle: “Obituary – Jack Casper Stafford.” Feb. 12, 1998.
From the guide to the Records of Jack Stafford, 1960-1997, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Emerson Knight (1882-1960)
Emerson Knight was born in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1882 and moved to Los Angeles when he was nine years old. His father, William Henry Knight, was an author, astronomer, and California pioneer. In 1913, Knight embarked on a walking tour of England and studied art in Paris. He returned to Los Angeles in 1916, but soon indulged his trekking desire by walking to Monterey, stopping at the California missions along the way.
He began supervising landscape developments for Cammillo Fancheschi in Santa Barbara, and in 1917 became an associate of Mark Daniels, a San Francisco landscape engineer. Knight took charge of 80 acres of the J. Cheever Cowdin estate in Hillsborough (south of San Francisco), and designed gardens and country estates in San Francisco and the peninsula. In 1918, Mark Daniels left his office, including most of his equipment and books, to Knight.
In the late 1920s, Knight traveled to Mexico where he did studies for the Mexican National Highway Commission regarding areas that might be developed into parklands and historic monuments. He was awarded a diploma as an honorary member of the Sociedad Forestal Mexicana. Upon returning to the United States, Knight worked for the Save-the-Redwoods League, the Monterey City Planning Commission, the California State Park Commission, and the National Park Service. He was elected as a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects, and established the San Francisco headquarters at his office so that the Society could qualify for representation in the San Francisco Federation of Arts. He was involved in the plan for the preservation of historic Monterey and worked on park surveys, including one with Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.
Outdoor theaters played a major role in Knight's career. In 1924 he oversaw the completion of a garden theater on the Max Cohn estate, Little Brook Farm, in Los Gatos. He designed the Woodland Theater in Hillsborough, and collaborated with Regua and Jackson on the Mount Helix theater outside San Diego. Knight is probably best known for his design of the Mountain Theatre on Mount Tamalpais in Marin County. Planning for the project began in the late 1920s, but progress was slow until 1934 when Knight convinced the National Park Service to get involved. (Knight was working as an inspector for the Park Service at the time.) The Civilian Conservation Corp was then engaged to work on the theater, which was completed in 1938. Knight's design for the theater was intended to blend into the natural environment, using natural elements as much as possible. Large boulders were used for seats, trees and bushes were transported to the site to create natural boundaries for the stage, and drinking fountains were built of indigenous rock.
In the 1940s, Emerson Knight suffered a period of ill health, but still wrote articles and poetry. He served as associate editor for The Architect and Engineer magazine for 11 years, and was a member of the San Francisco Arts Commission and the Commonwealth Club. He died in 1960.
Dean Luckhart. Emerson Knight: Landscape Architect 1882-1960. Paper for L.A. 2, University of California, Berkeley, 1962.
From the guide to the Emerson Knight collection, 1898-1965, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Ernest Born (1898-1992)
Ernest Born was born in San Francisco in 1898. Educated in San Francisco and Oakland schools, he graduated from UC Berkeley's School of Architecture in 1922. Following graduation he traveled to Europe on a Fellowship returning to receive his master's degree in Architecture from the University of California in 1923. From 1927 to 1928 he studied decorative painting and fresco in Europe and in 1936 he traveled to Mexico to study modern architecture. Early in his career, Born worked with John Galen Howard, John Reid Jr., and George Kelham. He received his license to practice architecture in New York in 1931, and in California in 1937. In 1926 he married UCB Architecture School graduate Esther Baum ('26) with whom he traveled and shared an architectural practice (1945-1973). Esther B. Born was a widely regarded architectural photographer. (See Biographical Note below.)
An accomplished artist as well as architect, Born's designs included exhibits, murals, and building design for the 1939-40 Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco, low rent housing for the San Francisco Housing Authority, residences, warehouses, offices, plant designs, and showrooms. He performed site and master planning for the University of California and consulted on product and book design projects. Later in his career, Born participated in the design of the Glen Park BART station and drafted the signs for 33 BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) stations. Born also did editorial and design work for the Architectural Record and Architectural Forum magazines, as well as rendering designs for other firms, designing furniture, painting in oils and watercolor, and creating illustrations and art prints.
Born was a member of the faculty at the UC Berkeley School of Architecture from 1951 to 1958, and from 1962 to 1974. A member of the A.I.A., he was director of the San Francisco Art Association from 1947 to 1950, serving as its president in 1951. He was also a member of the Art Commission of the City and County of San Francisco from 1947 to 1950. His works were published in various professional architectural magazines from 1929 onward. Born created the illustrations and co-authored both of The Plan of St. Gall and The Barns of the Abbey of Beaulieu (UC Press) with Walter Horn. He died in 1992 in San Diego.
Esther Born (1902-1987)
Esther Baum, was a graduate of the UCB Architecture School (1926) where she studied under John Galen Howard. She married Ernest Born in the same year she graduated. During the Great Depression she studied photography, which she practiced successfully throughout her life. She became interested in the architecture of Mexico and drove south to experience the architecture for herself. She returned 10 months later with photographs, drawings, and plans of the country's architecture and design. The compilation of this work was first published in an issue of Architectural Record in April 1937. The article was expanded into a book, The New Architecture in Mexico published by Wm. Morrow & Co. (New York, 1937). This monograph has been credited with directing the attention of the world to the rise of modern architecture in Mexico.
From 1938 through 1940, she photographed the Golden Gate International Exposition on Treasure Island in San Francisco. Her subjects included the many different aspects of the Exposition: buildings, construction, fresco painting, opening events, exhibit halls, exhibits, and the general environment.
Her photographs were published in several architectural journals throughout her career, and of note are her architectural photographs highlighted in an article featuring Frank Lloyd Wright's "Honeycomb House" ( Architectural Record, July 1938).
From 1945 through 1973 she shared an architecture practice with Ernest Born. She continued to take many outstanding photographs of architecture designed by him and others.
From the guide to the Ernest and Esther Born collection, 1924-1985, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Olof Dahlstrand, born in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin in 1916, earning his degree in architecture from Cornell University in 1939. After receiving his degree, Dahlstrand worked briefly in Wisconsin, and then moved to the San Francisco Bay area in 1948. He worked as an associate for Fred and Lois Langhorst, both modernist architects gaining recognition in Northern California. While working for the Langhorsts, Dahlstrand worked on the Muscatine residence and a show at the San Francisco Museum of Art (later San Francisco Museum of Modern Art). The trio's sketches, renderings, photographs, and drawings were a sensation.
When the Langhorsts moved to Europe in 1950, Olof became responsible for the practice. During this uncertain period, Olof and John Lautner discussed a partnership but nothing came of their discussions. Later, Olof worked in the San Francisco offices of Skidmore, Owens & Merrill, and produced renderings for a number of other architects including John Carl Warnecke.
Inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright, Dahlstrand's work exhibits elements and ideals emphasized by the strong horizontal and vertical elements of the Prairie style. His work also reflects Wright's "organic architecture" and its ideas that: a building (and its appearance) should follow forms that are in harmony with its natural environment; that the materials used on the exterior should be sympathetic to the building's locale, thereby relating the building to its setting; and that use should be made of low-pitched overhanging roofs to provide protection from the sun in the summer and to provide some weather protection in the winter. In addition, maximum use should be made of natural day lighting. During a nine-year period between 1950 and 1958, seven clients who wanted site-specific, custom-designed, homes came to Dahlstrand. These "Usonian" residences are built on sites that range from flat parcels, to steep hillsides, to cliff sides on the San Francisco Bay.
In the early 1960s, Dahlstrand relocated to Carmel in the Monterey Bay area. Here he established his own practice and continued to work on residences, commercial centers, and educational facilities located throughout Northern California. His significant projects included the 1966 Carmel Valley Shopping Center and the U.C. Santa Cruz Faculty Housing begun in 1974. Dahlstrand retired in 1984 and currently resides in Carmel where he has become active in city politics. He has continued to do renderings for other architects.
Source: Welty, William. Olof Dahlstrand: The Usonians, the Magnificent Seven of the East Bay. Brook House Press, 2007.
From the guide to the Olof Dahlstrand collection, 1938, 1947-2004, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Bernard Joseph Stanislaus Cahill was born in London, England in 1866. He is known for his cemetery architecture and for the design of the San Francisco Civic Center. He was also the architect for a number of other commercial buildings, including the Multnomah Hotel in Portland, Oregon and various buildings in Vancouver, B. C.
Cahill arrived in the United States in 1888. He was married to Lida Boardman Hall in 1897, and to Laura Georgiana McClune in 1907. He and his second wife had one son, Bernard James Alban.
At the start of his professional career in 1896, Cahill participated in the Phoebe Hearst competition for the design of the U. C. Berkeley campus. He was elected an Associate Member of the A.I.A. in 1899. He wrote articles for the "California Architect and Building News" and later for "The Architect and Engineer." An early advocate of city planning, Cahill helped to define the concept of a "civic center" with his 1904 design of the San Francisco Civic Center, which he felt was the basis for the plan adopted by the city in 1912. He continued to be involved in the plan for the city, and wrote letters to the editor and articles expressing his ideas on the proper plan.
A specialist in mausoleum design and mortuary architecture, Cahill designed the catacombs and columbarium for the Cypress Lawn Cemetery, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows (San Francisco), Evergreen Memorial Cemetery Memorial Building (Oakland), the St. Mary's Cemetery mausoleum (Sacramento), and the Diamond Head Memorial Park in Honolulu.
He was listed in the San Francisco city directory under the partnership of Stone and Cahill from 1894-1895, and then starting in 1907 with architects George A.Wright and George Rushforth (in the firm Wright, Rushforth, and Cahill). He subsequently designed buildings (such as the Multnomah Hotel in Portland) as part of the team of Gibson and Cahill.
In addition to designing buildings, Cahill invented the butterfly map, an octahedral system of projection for meteorology, geography, and geophysics. The map was designed to eliminate exaggeration at the top and bottom and distortion at the edges and sides found in traditional maps. The surface of the globe was represented by eight equilateral triangles. Cahill founded The Cahill World Map Co., which sold shares and promoted the map for educational and other uses.
From the guide to the Bernard J. S. Cahill records, 1889-1938, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Alfred C. Williams, 1906-2006
Alfred Charles Williams was born on June 25, 1906 in San Francisco, California, shortly after the 1906 earthquake destroyed his parents' home. He attended Mission High School in San Francisco, where he ran track and was editor of the student paper. He then earned a B.A. in 1928 and an M.A. in 1932 from the University of California, Berkeley School of Architecture. He worked as a draftsman for Archie T. Newsom of Oakland, CA; Gehron and Ross of New York; Frank H. Holden of New York; and William Wilson Wurster of San Francisco, CA. He also spent six months traveling through Europe.
Williams worked in Oregon in 1933 and returned to California in 1934. During World War II, Williams was employed as a project planner by the Federal Public Housing Authority. He designed some commercial and industrial structures, including department stores, but focused on designing modern houses. He developed a series of designs for modern living using contemporary materials (concrete masonry and interlocking block).
From the guide to the Alfred C. Williams records, 1926-1991, (1926-1948), (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Henrik Helkand Bull (1929, New York City) is the only child of Johan Bull (1893-1945) and Sonja Geelmuyden Bull (1898-1992). Johan Bull, a native of Norway, was an illustrator who had regularly contributed to New Yorker magazine. A cousin of Bull's grandfather, also named Henrik Bull, designed several of Oslo's landmark civic buildings at the end of the 19th century.
Bull began his studies at MIT in aeronautical engineering, and switched to architecture after the first year. While at MIT he studied with Ralph Rapson, Buckminster Fuller, and Alvar Aalto. Prior to his graduation from MIT in 1952, Bull worked the summer of 1951 in San Francisco with architect Mario Corbett. As a first lieutenant in the USAF, Bull was stationed at MIT Lincoln Laboratory and worked with Buckminster Fuller on developing the geodesic radar domes for the Distant Early Warning Line (DEW Line) system at the north slope of Alaska. He built an early A-frame ski cabin in the United States with his friend John Flender in Stowe, Vermont in 1953. In 1954, Bull returned to San Francisco to work again with Mario Corbett.
On the basis of being commissioned to design several ski cabins, Bull opened his own architectural office in 1956. His early practice included homes, condominiums and later hotels and institutional buildings. In the 1950s and the 1960s, Bull designed several prefabricated or kit cabins. In 1962, he was chosen to design the Sunset Magazine Discovery House: a "dream house" limited to 2,000 square feet. Bull designed the home as a series of four sky lit pavilions built around an enclosed courtyard. It was the first home built in the newly established town of El Dorado Hills.
In 1967, Henrik Bull, John Field, Sherwood Stockwell and Daniel Volkmann formed Bull Field Volkmann Stockwell. Their first large project together was the planning and architecture for Northstar at Tahoe, a new four season resort. The firm has continued under the following names: Bull Field Volkmann Stockwell ; Bull Volkmann Stockwell ; Bull Stockwell Allen ; Bull Stockwell Allen & Ripley ; and is now called Bull Stockwell Allen / BSA Architects.
Classified in both the Northern California Modern and the Bay Regional Styles, the question of an appropriate architecture for its location has always been Henrik Bull's main concern. He feels that a building of quality does not unnecessarily disturb the site and should be comprehensible to everyone and that creating lasting architecture can be achieved by placing priority on client needs and relationship to the site.
Bull has been elected Vice President (1967) and President (1968) of the American Institute of Architects / San Francisco Chapter (AIA SF), and elected to Fellowship in National AIA in 1969.
Bull, Henrik. Curricula Vitae
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henrik_H_Bull [captured 15 June 2011]
Weinstein, Dave. "Signature Style: Henrik Bull: Buildings That Belong." San Francisco Chronicle. 16 September 2006. Online: sfgate.com.
From the guide to the Henrick Bull Collection, 1950-2009, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Architect Helen Douglass French and her husband, landscape architect Prentiss French, worked together and independently in New England, Florida, and the San Francisco Bay Area. Helen Douglass was born in 1900 in Arlington, MA. earning her graduate degree at the Cambridge School of Architecture (1917-1921) -- now part of the Harvard School of Architecture. She subsequently worked in the Boston offices of Charles G. Loring (1921-1925) and William Delano Aldrich (1925-1926), later studying at the Ecole des Beaux Arts and traveling in Europe (1926-1927). Prentiss French was born in 1894 in Chicago, IL. He earned his Master's Degree in Landscape Architecture from Harvard in 1921 subsequently working in the office of the Olmsted Brothers (1921-1924), and teaching at the University of Massachusetts in 1925. From 1926-1928, Prentiss was employed as the resident landscape architect for the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, then establishing the new town of Venice, FL.
Helen and Prentiss married in 1927, and operated a private practice in Boston and Stockbridge, MA between 1928-1932. They then relocated to Sarasota, Florida where they worked in association with architect Clarence Martin for ten years. During WWII, Prentiss was employed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (1942-1946) after which they moved to the San Francisco Bay Area where Helen Douglass French received her California certification in 1946. The couple shared an office in San Francisco from 1947 into the 1960s, working primarily on residential projects throughout Northern California. Prentiss French also completed numerous projects for the U.S. Army in the late 1950s, in California, Alaska and other western states. Helen was a member of the AIA Northern California Chapter, the San Francisco Planning and Housing Association, the Outdoors Arts Club of Mill Valley, the Marin Art and Garden Center, the Women's League of San Francisco, and served as the secretary for the Mill Valley Parks and Recreation Commission. Prentiss passed away around 1989, and Helen followed in 1994.
- Helen Douglass French membership file, AIA, Washington D.C.
- "Helen Douglass French," American Architects Dictionary, 182.
- "Helen Douglass French," Who's Who on the Pacific Coast (Chicago: A.N. Marquis Co., 1949).
- Prentiss French. Biographical Data. The Council of Fellows, American Society of Landscape Architects. Records of the ALSA.
From the guide to the Records of Helen D. and Prentiss French, 1932-1978, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Michael Arthur Goodman was born on January 6, 1903 in Vilna, Lithuania. Following the Russian Revolution of 1917, he traveled from Eastern Russia to San Francisco, California, becoming a naturalized citizen in 1927. Beginning in 1925, his professional life revolved primarily around architectural and interior design. He joined the Department of Architecture faculty at UC Berkeley in 1927 where he taught until his retirement in 1971.
During his career, Goodman completed many projects on the Berkeley and other UC campuses. At Berkeley, these projects included alterations to the Faculty Club and Hearst Memorial Mining Building; the electron microscope installation, the Bio-Organic Chemistry Laboratory design and construction, the Brick Muller Room addition in Memorial Stadium, and the Farm Bureau Building alterations for the University Extension Division. Although Goodman proposed a major alteration and rehabilitation plan for the Life Sciences Building in 1957, the University withdrew the plans from their building program. This decision on the part of the University was largely regretted when, thirty-four years later, the project was reopened and in need of new plans, a credit to Goodman's original foresight and work. In addition to the Berkeley campus, Goodman oversaw various projects on the Davis campus, including the Radiobiology Laboratory, an expansion of the Clinic Building, and the Cruess Hall Unit 2 for Food Technology.
Off-campus, Goodman had a productive career designing such buildings as the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Woolen Process Laboratory in Albany, CA, the East Bay Municipal Utilities Distract branch office in Berkeley, and countless other such facilities. Additionally, he was responsible for the interior decoration and/or overall design of many Bay Area homes.
As a UC Berkeley faculty member, Goodman was extremely active in campus life serving for many years on the Committee for Public Ceremonies. He was also a dedicated member of the Berkeley Planning Commission, acting as negotiator between the university and the city. In this position, Goodman was called upon to temper the city's fears that university expansion would never cease following the release of its large-scale building plans. Goodman was also a member of many other groups and councils, including the Commonwealth Club of California.
Over the course of his career, Goodman received many professional honors and awards. He received the San Francisco Art Association Gold Medal in 1925, followed by the American Graphic Artists Society Award in 1930. Both were given on the basis of his design work. In 1945 he was made a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. Finally, he received the Berkeley Citation in 1970 for outstanding service to the University of California. Following a long illness, Goodman died at home at the age of 88 on April 12, 1991.
Sources: DeMars, Vernon A, Sanford S. El-berg, Henry Lager, and Errol W. Mauchlan. Michael Arthur Goodman Obituary. 1993, University of California: In Memoriam . Retrieved October 2008 from the University of California History Digital Archives,
From the guide to the Michael Goodman collection, 1920-1970, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Born on a ranch in Santa Rosa in 1918, Burt Litton grew up to appreciate the open landscape. He attended Santa Rosa Junior College then transferred to UC Berkeley to complete his undergraduate studies in Landscape Architecture. He graduated from Berkeley in 1941, earning cum laude honors. Burt was accepted to Harvard’s Graduate School of Design and attended for one year before he enlisted in the U.S. Navy to fight in World War II. In the Navy, Burt worked as a photo-interpreter and trained others to convert 3D aerial photographs into 2D drawings of the landscape that would then be used for planning, and analysis operations.
Following the War, Burt returned to his education. He graduated from Iowa State University with a Masters in Landscape Architecture in 1948 and accepted a teaching position at UC Berkeley. Burt began his teaching career with a basic plant materials course in the Landscape Architecture Department. Over his 40 years as a Berkeley professor his teaching credentials included almost every course offered by the department; his most notable being his graduate course, examining the Landscape Provinces of California. Burt also served for 4 years as the Landscape Department Chair and was the motivating force behind creating the campus landscape committee to preserve the campus’ landscape design through its growth phases.
In 1968, Professor Litton joined the U.S. Forest Service as part of their research division. His work with the Forest Service focused on researching the aesthetic qualities present in many of the nation’s scenic highways and national parks. Burt’s efforts included research and consulting on forest management practices in many of the forests of the Wyoming, the Tennessee Valley, and in the Lake Tahoe region. He analyzed the aesthetic values of these landscapes and the impacts development could have on them. His work influenced the management policies of both the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management. His commitment to the Forest Service lasted 20 years, which he did while continuing to teach at UC Berkeley. Much of Burt’s work during this time resulted in published manuscripts and technical research papers.
Burt Litton also wrote several articles of less technical merit, related to features of the landscapes he came across. Notably he wrote an article for Landscape archiEmtecture magazine about the variety of designs found in Western Fences and on the changing land uses of vacant-undeveloped land. The majority of records found in the archive’s collection relate to his multitude of research topics while at the Forest Service. The material includes his written drafts, notes, and hand drawn reference maps related to each project. Burt also extensively photographed many of these landscapes, which stemmed from his Navy training.
Burt Litton carried his landscape analysis into his personal travels and teaching. His graduate course often took extended weekend field trips to many of his favorite California landscapes. Students would be required to assess the forms and characteristics of the site and interpret their observations through sketches and watercolor prints. Burt Litton encouraged his students to improve their watercolor techniques and continue to visit the ordinary landscapes around them. Litton passed away in 2007.
Burt Litton’s UC Berkeley Landscape Architecture Biography, October 1979
Beatty, Joe McBride & Russ. "academic-senate.berkeley.edu/memoriam." academic-senate.berkeley.edu. 2007. http://academic-senate.berkeley.edu/memoriam/documents/Litton_approved.pdf (accessed June 1, 2009).
From the guide to the Burton Litton, 1948-2005 (bulk of 1965-1998), 1948-2005, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Records of the National Peace Garden, (1985-2002)
In 1985, after viewing Washington D.C.'s many monuments to war, Elizabeth Ratcliff wondered why there were no monuments to peace. Ratcliff, a former English teacher from Berkeley, reasoned that since the nation's Capital was meant to showcase the ideals of the country, those who visited, especially children, should come away with the knowledge that Peace is counted among them.
Thus began the grassroots movement for the creation of a Peace Garden in Washington D.C. Garnering enthusiastic support from local Berkeley activists, members of the national design community, and the National Park Service, the Bill to establish a National Peace Garden was passed by Congress, and signed by President Ronald Reagan in 1987.
Following a rigorous site selection process, members of the Peace Garden Project Committee, headed by Garrett Eckbo, chose Washington D.C.'s Hains Point as the future site of the Garden. In 1989, the National Endowment for the Arts provided a $75,000 grant to help finance a design competition for the Garden. The competition attracted nearly a thousand entries from all over the country. Each entry interpreted the idea of a Peace Garden differently. A jury made up of Hideo Sasaki, J.B. Jackson, and several other artists, writers, and designers, considered the many designs which varied widely, from vistas for quiet contemplation, to areas for active celebration. Both permanent and changing landscapes were featured, as were naturalistic designs, highly geometric designs, gardens as art, and gardens for food. One submittal called for no Peace Garden at all, until America became a true advocate of peace, and peace actually existed in the world.
After considering hundreds of entries, the Design Competition jury unanimously selected architect Eduardo Catalano's olive branch design as the future plan for the National Peace Garden. Born in Argentina, and educated at the University of Pennsylvania and at Harvard University, Catalano designed buildings in the U.S. and abroad, two of which were U.S. embassies. He taught at North Carolina State University in the 1950s, and, at the time of the competition, was an emeritus professor of architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, while running his own firm. His design for the Peace Garden used the olive branch pattern as an organizational framework; the stems and veins of leaves acted as raised walkways, which partitioned spaces of solitude and interaction, interplanted in soothing shades of green and white.
While Catalano's design had received unanimous acceptance from the competition jury and tentative approval from the National Capital Memorial Commission and the National Capital Planning Commission, in the spring of 1992, it was unanimously rejected by the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, whose members found it to be disconnected from its environs, and awkward in circulation.
Though the rejection of Catalano's design was disheartening, the Peace Garden Project Committee immediately launched a new search for a Peace Garden designer. Rather than holding another competition or going back to old competition entries, they invited twenty designers to submit proposals. While this received criticism from some former competition entrants, the committee believed that it was critical to minimize costs (a growing concern as they struggled to raise funds), expedite the search process, and find a designer based on the designer's skills, rather than on a single design. After careful consideration, they settled on the firm of Royston Hanamoto Alley & Abbey (RHAA), headed by Robert Royston a renowned landscape architect and former professor at UC Berkeley.
After many sketches and visualizations of what the Peace Garden could be, and many long conversations with members of the Peace Garden Project Committee and the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, Royston & his team developed an axial concept that complemented the McMillan plan for the National Mall. A stepped water feature, aligned with the Washington Monument, would run the length of the Point, reflecting the sky above and referencing the rivers surrounding the site. It would then terminate in a circle of bell towers at the Point's tip (later this circle of bells would be exchanged for a jet fountain). The plan was approved by the Commission in July of 1993.
Royston's design reflected the original vision of the garden: to educate children on the value of peace. Some teaching elements included in the design were pavement inscriptions about peace from visionaries and world leaders; a walk to honor those who served in the Peace Corps; and a Peace Bell that required teamwork to sound. The Peace Garden Project, now The National Peace Garden Foundation, also developed a classroom curriculum sent out to teachers to help educate students on the importance of peace and the National Peace Garden.
In spite of massive support from world leaders, funding had been a struggle since the inception of the project. Donations were solicited through brochures and pamphlets, fundraising dinners, a national tour of 900 +competition boards, and even the sale of Peace Garden paraphernalia. In 2003, unable to raise the necessary $20 million for the construction of the garden, and the additional $2 million for its maintenance endowment fund, the authorization period for the National Peace Garden expired, and the 18-year project was abandoned.
Records of the National Peace Garden, (2006-8), Environmental Design Archives, University of California, Berkeley.
From the guide to the Inventory of the Records of the National Peace Garden, 1985-2002, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Casey A. Kawamoto was born in Selma, California in 1919. He attended Monterey High School and received an A.A. degree from Hartnell College. Following graduation he worked for the California Division of Forestry for a year (1940-41) before serving in the Army during World War II having attended the military intelligence school. After the war, he worked briefly at the firm Holabird & Root before using the G.I. Bill to earn his B.A. in landscape architecture from the University of California at Berkeley. While completing his final year of the program at Berkeley he worked for faculty member Geraldine K. Scott in the firm of Imlay and Scott. Upon graduation in 1949 he was employed by noted landscape architect Thomas D. Church until he opened his own practice in 1960. While in Church's office he drew the illustrations for the book, Gardens Are for People and worked closely with architects Germano Milono and George Rockrise. One of his significant project was designing the landscape for the Guide Dogs for the Blind office in San Rafael, CA. He closed his practice in 1998.
Sources: Form completed by C. Kawamoto
From the guide to the Casey Kawamoto collection, 1952-1991, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Claude Stoller was born and raised in the Bronx, New York where he attended public schools. He enrolled at City College of New York for a semester while searching for a school with a strong visual arts curriculum. Although he had heard of Black Mountain College from his brother Ezra Stoller, an architectural photographer, it was at the 1938 Bauhaus exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York that Black Mountain caught his attention. Although both Moholy-Nagy's New Bauhaus and Black Mountain College were represented, Black Mountain's sliding tuition scale appealed to Stoller. He applied to Black Mountain and Cooper Union in New York and was accepted at both. A dinner interview by the ever-charming Xanti Schawinsky, a former Bauhaus student who had taught at Black Mountain, at a restaurant overlooking the Hudson River helped make the final decision.
At Black Mountain, Stoller took a general curriculum with a focus on art and architecture. He took Josef Albers's basic courses in design, color and drawing. He also took architectural courses with Lawrence Kocher, Howard Dearstyne, and Lou Bernard Voight. The architectural program at the time included architectural drafting and courses in Introductory Architecture, Contemporary Architecture, Introductory Design and Structural Design. For the class in Small House Design, the students designed small low-cost houses based on a four foot module. Stoller and another student, Charles Forberg, were put in charge of the construction of the Jalowetz House, a small house designed by Lawrence Kocher for the Jalowetz family: Heinrich Jalowetz, who taught music, his wife Johanna, and their daughter Lisa. This involved meetings with Charles Godfrey, a local contractor who was directing the construction of several buildings, to plan each day's work and the responsibility of directing other students assigned to the project.
At Black Mountain Stoller also explored his interest in photography. Students had set up a darkroom in the basement of Lee Hall, and although there was no photography teacher, Albers critiqued the work of the student photographers. Stoller left Black Mountain after the 1942 fall quarter when he was drafted into the United States Army. He had applied for the Enlisted Reserve in hopes of finishing college but was rejected because he was deaf in one ear. During World War II he first was in the 14th Coast Artillery on Puget Sound. He then attended army engineering school after which he was sent overseas with the 13th Armored Division in France and Germany.
In February 1946, Stoller entered Harvard Graduate School of Design where he was accepted with advanced standing despite the fact he had not graduated from Black Mountain. He recalled that at first he was envious of the more advanced drafting skills of those who had come through professional undergraduate programs. He soon realized, however, that his courses with Josef Albers, an excellent physics course with Peter Bergmann, and his practical construction experience at Black Mountain compensated by far for any deficiency in technical skills which he soon mastered.
After graduation in 1949 (M. Arch.), Stoller studied for a year at the University of Florence in Italy. He and his wife Nan Oldenburg Stoller (now Nan Black), a Black Mountain student and a graduate of Radcliffe, were joined by Lucian and Jane Slater Marquis, both Black Mountain students. On his return Stoller worked for architectural firms in the Boston area. In 1955 he moved his family to St. Louis, Missouri, where he taught at Washington University. While there, he was registered as an architect in both Missouri and Iowa.
After two years the Stollers moved to the San Francisco area. In 1956, he formed a partnership, Marquis & Stoller Architects, with another young architect, Robert B. Marquis, the brother of Lucian Marquis. The firm, with its office on Beach Street, focused on the general practice of architecture and planning including residential, housing, institutional, and governmental projects. Stoller's use of natural materials in combination reflects both his studies with Albers and his admiration for the architect Marcel Breuer. In 1978, Stoller formed Stoller/Partners (later Stoller Knoerr Architects) in Berkeley. Projects included single homes, multiple dwellings, religious buildings, and institutional and commercial structures. Social issues such as housing and energy-efficient designs were a primary concern for Stoller, as was historic preservation.
Marquis & Stoller, Stoller/Partners and Stoller Knoerr have received many awards. In 1963-64 Stoller was visiting architect at the National Design Institute in Ahmedabad, India. In 1968 he was elected to the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects, and in 1991 he was awarded the Berkeley Citation by the University of California. Stoller served on city and county planning commissions, on an advisory panel for the federal General Services Administration and on several other public and professional committees. He was licensed to practice in several states and certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards.
In 1957 William Wurste invited Stoller to join the faculty in the Department of Architecture at the University of California. He was acting chairman in 1965-66 and Chair of Graduate Studies from the early 1980s until he retired Professor Emeritus in 1991.
As a teacher Stoller always bore in mind Josef Albers's emphasis on "seeing." He considered the development of a sensitive visual perception to be essential to the education of the architect. A second influence of Stoller's Black Mountain experience was the value of direct "hands on" experience. To the extent possible within a conventional architectural curriculum, Stoller used real sites and exposed his students to the manufacturing process of materials through visits to factories. In both St. Louis and Berkeley, Buckminster Fuller was invited to speak to Stoller's students who built experimental structures. For one design class at Berkeley Stoller started the Wurster West Workshop, a studio in San Francisco where students could gain practical experience in planning, construction, and client relationships by working in poor neighborhoods. The major project for the workshop was the design in a redevelopment area of a square with both commercial space and housing. The square was designed in cooperation with the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency. The plan used both old buildings to be moved from other locations along with new buildings designed by the students. Although the square was never constructed, the project generated an ongoing discussion of urban design and redevelopment issues. Wurster West Workshop was continued by graduate students who renamed it ARKIS.
In 1965 Stoller started a program called Continuing Education in Environmental Design in collaboration with the University of California Extension. Several courses were instituted for architecture, planning, landscape architecture and design professionals. In 1966-67, as the internship component of the program, Stoller founded the pioneering San Francisco Community Design Center, a response both to student concerns about inequities in housing and community concerns about redevelopment plans. The Center, located on Haight Street in San Francisco, was started with a Research and Development grant from the University. The Center became a prototype for other Community Design Centers which brought the skills of architectural interns to poor neighborhoods where buildings needed remodeling or new construction was possible and where interns worked with "real" clients. In addition to architects, the program drew on the expertise of other disciplines including psychology, economics, law, and engineering. The program provided the type of practical experience Stoller had valued at Black Mountain. This was an extension of his teaching in which he selected specific sites which students visited.
Stoller has retired from active practice except for consulting. His last partner, his son-in-law Mark Knoerr, continues to practice in San Francisco. Stoller lives with his second wife Rosemary Raymond Stoller, also a Black Mountain student, in Berkeley and Maine where he continues his lifelong interest in photography. They inhabit a Julia Morgan House which they restored as well as an old house and barn on the Maine seacoast which they have been remodeling for many years.
Sources: From Black Mountain College Project website: http://www.bmcproject.org/Biographies/STOLLERclaude/STOLLERclaudeBIO.htm.
From the guide to the Claude Stoller collection, 1957-1996, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Robert Tetlow (1922-1988)
Robert Tetlow was an accomplished landscape architect and a dedicated professor, known for his love of art, music, and literature. He particularly loved to paint and sometimes exhibited his landscape watercolors around the Bay Area. In addition to exhibiting his own work, he co-curated a photographic exhibit in 1956 called "Man's Impact on the Bay Area Landscape" with landscape architect David Abergast. He also authored several books, articles, and research studies focused on landscape design and its relationship to the natural environment.
Born in Astoria, Oregon, Tetlow briefly attended Oregon State University before joining the United States Navy in 1941 and serving in the Pacific. After leaving the military, he attended the University of Oregon graduating in 1949 with a degree in landscape architecture. To further his education, he moved to the Bay Area to study at the University of California, Berkeley, receiving a master's degree in landscape architecture in 1951.
His professional career began with the city of San Jose, but he soon switched to teaching when he joined the faculty at UC Davis in 1952. In 1954 he once again returned to UC Berkeley, this time as a professor. He was a professor of landscape architecture for 34 years, including a stint as chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture from 1977 to 1981.
As a practicing landscape architect, Tetlow designed the gardens for several private residences. He also designed the remodel of his own home and did most of the carpentry himself. His most noted work was for the Strybing Arboretum and Botanical Gardens in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. In 1959, he wrote the master plan for the gardens in which he stated that the major considerations for the development of the land should relate to "the fundamental nature of the terrain that the design will appear to have been dictated by the ground form rather than the reverse." This philosophy of minimizing human impact on nature ran throughout his work. He also felt it important to integrate the mature garden with new developments and to maintain a balance between open space and densely planted areas. He supervised the implementation of his plan and served on the Strybing Board of Trustees between 1967 and 1981.
Tetlow authored and co-authored many works, including the "Sunset Patio Book" (1952); a National Water Commission study, entitled "The Role of Water in the Landscape: A Design Overview"(1971); and a report for British Columbia's Ministry of the Environment, entitled "Visual Resources of the Northeast Coal Study Area, 1976-1977." He worked on two important exhibitions in 1956: a nationwide traveling exhibit, entitled, "Landscape Architecture Today: An Introduction" and the photographic exhibit entitled, "Man's Impact on the Bay Area Landscape." This exhibit was said to draw "attention to environmental problems and helped prepare the way for environmental activism in the Bay Area in the 1960s."
From the guide to the Robert Tetlow collection, 1949-1987, 1953-1985, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
James Ream, (1929- )
James Ream was born in Summit NJ. He received his Bachelor in Architecture from Cornell University with further study at the Pratt Institute in New York and in Italy at the University of Rome. He began practicing as a project designer for Eero Saarinen in 1957 in Michigan and then practiced in Colorado from 1959 until 1965. Ream came to San Francisco in 1966 and served as Chief of Design for John Carl Warnecke & Associates. He opened his own firm in 1969. His firm has completed a variety of industrial, transportation, religious, commercial, civic, and residential commissions. His design project include: the Pasadena Conference Center, Hennepin County Courts Building in Minneapolis, Denver Convention Center, the San Jose Arena, Vail Transportation Center, Vail CO, and the First Presbyterian Church in Berkeley, CA. He is a Fellow of the AIA.
From the guide to the James Ream collection, 1965-1997, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Mario Joseph Ciampi (1907-2006)
Mario Ciampi was a native of San Francisco. His architecture education was varied in that he studied at the San Francisco Architectural Club (1927-29), was a Special Student at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (1930-32), and attended the Beaux Arts Institute in Paris (1932). During this time he apprenticed as a draftsman with Alexander Cantin and Dodge A. Riedy of San Francisco. He earned his certificate to practice architecture in 1935.
Ciampi eventually gained prominence within the profession by designing schools and churches in such fast-growing communities as Daly City. In 1959, for instance, his Westmoor High School in Daly City and Sassarini Elementary School in Sonoma received two of the five honor awards given that year by the American Institute of Architects. In the 1960s, his firm went on to design the remarkable Berkeley Art Museum and the Newman Center for the University of California. He won an AIA Honor award for the much published Junipero Serra Overpass for Highway 280 on the San Francisco Peninsula. In addition to his architectural projects, Ciampi was involved in a number of significant planning projects including a master plan for San Mateo County's Jefferson High School District, St. Mary's College in Moraga, and the University of Alaska in Fairbanks.
Mr. Ciampi left his imprint on San Francisco as the consultant in charge of the city's 1963 downtown plan that included beautification of Market Street, the Embarcadero, and United Nations Plaza. He also served as a design consultant for The Golden Gateway, Yerba Buena Center, and the Ferry Plaza. According to his obituary "While many of the specifics were never implemented -- such as removing the wings of the Ferry Building to create a bayside plaza surrounding the campanile-like tower -- the result of his call for creating large squares along Market Street at BART stops is seen today at United Nations and Hallidie plazas."
He was elected a Fellow of the AIA in 1960.
Ciampi CV from the Ciampi collection files.
King, John. "Mario Ciampi -- visionary, award-winning architect." San Francisco Chronicle. Saturday, July 8, 2006.
From the guide to the Mario J. Ciampi Records, 1952-1999, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Jack Hermann was born in Topeka, Kansas on September 23, 1917 to Danish immigrant parents. Raised in San Diego, he was active in the Sea Scouts, eventually reaching the rank of Eagle Scout. It was through the scouts that he developed his lifelong love of boats and sailing. He studied civil engineering at San Diego State University, general studies at the University of Washington, and architecture at the University of California at Berkeley. It was here that he met Winifred Nickerson, whom he married in 1942.
He apprenticed as a carpenter, surveyor, engineer and architect in California and Alaska. During World War II he designed and supervised construction of shipyards and military bases, followed by service in the U.S. Army Aviation Engineers. In 1946 the couple moved to Marin County where they began work on the family home in Kentfield.
Hermann established a partnership with San Francisco architect Bolton White was in 1948. Their practice, which expanded in 1958 to include Allen Steinau, and in 1961 to include Don Hatch was responsible for the design of hospitals, clinics, churches, offices, housing, post-offices, schools, stores, recreation centers, regional master plans, and open space. In 1960, Jack chaired the A.I.A. conference on Church Architecture in San Francisco.
Separating form the partnership in 1962, Jack set up office in Marin, where his practice continued with such projects as Ross General Hospital, Fairfield Intercommunity Hospital, Modesto Hospital, Pittsburg Community church, and housing. Closing his formal architectural practice in 1972, Jack and Winifred embarked on a series of personal projects. These began with the renovation of older buildings, utilizing a creative reuse of unusual materials in energy efficient and environmentally sound ways. Hermann died in an auto accident on September 5, 1989, while traveling near Dargaville in New Zealand at the age of 71.
NCAIA membership record. Daughter of Hermann, Katharine Hermann's description. Biography included with collection.
From the guide to the Jack Hermann collection, 1947-1989, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
Considered one of the most important gifts to the University of California, the Blake Estate includes a Spanish style house designed by architect Walter Bliss located on 10 acres of rolling terrain with outcroppings of Lawsonite rock, two creeks, and views of the San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate. Mrs. Anita Blake and her sister Mabel Symmes are credited with the design and major planting of the grounds, which feature a formal grotto and reflecting pool. The home and garden are representative of the eclectic period in California design.
Seeking to relocate from their residence in Berkeley, Anson and Anita Blake purchased land in 1922 in what is now Kensington. Anson's brother Edwin T. Blake purchased the adjacent land and Mabel Symmes designed a single master plan for both estates. From the 1920s through the 1940s, the land surrounding Anson Blake's house developed into an extensive collection of plants from around the world, and university students visited it regularly. The estate was donated to the University of California in 1957 for instruction and research in landscape architecture. After the death of Mrs. Blake in 1962, the estate became the property of the Department of Landscape Architecture.
Landscape architects and faculty members Geraldine Knight Scott and Mai Abergast oversaw the transition of the estate from private ownership to the university. Several proposals for future development of the estate were made, including Scott's Long Range Development Plan in 1964, although none were implemented. The Department uses the Blake Estate for field trips, construction exercises, social events, and as the subject of student design projects. It also serves as a popular source of part-time work among landscape architecture students. From the 1970s to the present, the house has served as the residence of the President of the University of California.
Sources: Laurie, Michael. 75 Years of Landscape Architecture at Berkeley: An Informal History. Part I: The First 50 Years . Department of Landscape Architecture, University of California, Berkeley, 1988. Laurie, Michael. Part II: Recent Years . Department of Landscape Architecture, University of California, Berkeley, 1992.
From the guide to the Blake Estate collection, ca. 1922-1998, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Sami Hassid, (1912- )
Sami Hassid was born in Cairo, Egypt on April 19, 1912. He holds degrees from universities in three countries, including a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of London, a Master's degree in Architecture from the University of Cairo, and a Ph.D. in Architecture from Harvard University. While teaching in Egypt, mainly at the University of Cairo, he wrote three books, two of which became standard references in schools of architecture in the Middle East. Hassid was awarded a Fulbright grant for study in the United States, and in 1957 he joined the faculty of the Department of Architecture at the University of California at Berkeley. He actively participated in and influenced the evolution of the programs offered by the department, introduced research into the graduate curriculum, and was instrumental in the establishment in 1968 of a program of studies leading to the Ph.D. in Architecture. Hassid served as Associate Dean of the College of Environmental Design (1977-1983), as Academic Assistant to the Vice Chancellor for Research and Academic Services (1980-1985), and as Chairman of the Buildings and Campus Development Committee (1983-1984) while at U.C. Berkeley. In these capacities he produced with others the "Berkeley Campus Space Plan 1981," which is the most comprehensive grass roots effort of its kind in the history of the campus. In June of 1981, he received the Berkeley Citation of the University of California, Berkeley: Honors for Distinguished Achievement and for Notable Service to the University.
Dr. Hassid's main lines of research were in architectural education, design evaluation, housing, and fire and life safety. He is known for his seminal work on design evaluation, and for his series of reports and articles on research in which jury deliberations, responses to simulated environments, and content analysis of the literature on architects, their buildings and prize designs are used to derive rational criteria for design evaluation. Important research projects on various topics in which Dr. Hassid was principal investigator were sponsored by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of the Navy, the National Fire Prevention and Control Administration, and the National Science Foundation. In 1966, he received the Building Research Institute Award for Service to the Building Industry.
Hassid's professional architectural career included practice as principal or partner in Egypt and in California. Singly, or in association with others, he won a substantial number of prizes in local, national, and international competitions. Buildings designed by him included the American Institute of Architect's headquarters in San Francisco, a student hostel for the American University in Cairo, schools, houses, apartment buildings, shops, offices, cooperative housing, and industrial complexes. Hassid's designs have been praised for their simplicity and elegance, and for economy in the choice and expression of materials.
Collection file, Environmental Design Archives
From the guide to the Sami Hassid collection, 1932-1989, 1957-1985, (Environmental Design Archives College of Environmental Design)
In 1964 Davis was accepted into the architecture program at UC Berkeley where he would spend the rest of his professional career. In 1967 he spent a year abroad at the University of London's Bartlett School of Architecture and returned to Berkeley for his final two years of undergraduate studies. He graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture in 1969, delivering the commencement address to his fellow graduates.
Following his undergraduate career, he attended Yale University for graduate work in architecture, earning a Masters in Environmental Design in 1971. While there, he began his professional teaching career as a design critic and instructor. He also began some commission work, working with Marc Appleton and Anthony Farmer in a design group called Projects. The trio completed a number of projects including the interior design of the Wilbar's Boutique stores of the eastern United States, the renovation of Carriage House in New Haven, and a plan for the Dauntless Marine Condominium complex in Essex, Connecticut.
Davis returned to Berkeley as an Assistant Professor of Architecture back in the fall of 1971. He quickly became a well-known teacher of architecture and design, earning Berkeley's Distinguished Teaching Award in 1974. From 1973-1975 and 1985-1989, he served on the campus' Academic Senate Committee on Teaching, and he became chair of the committee in fall 1989. Davis' teaching would earn him the 1995 Excellence in Education Award from the California Council American Institute of Architects. Ultimately, Davis tenure at Berkeley would span 35 years and he would retire in 2006.
A Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, he served as President of the AIA East Bay and on the Board of Directors of AIACC. His professional work, mostly in California, was focused on affordable housing, housing for those with special needs, and facilities for the homeless. His work on homeless facilities includes a 100-bed adult shelter for Contra-Costa County and several projects for Larkin Street Youth Services in San Francisco. Among these is the nation's first housing specifically for homeless youth with HIV and AIDS. Other work includes multi-family affordable housing in Albany, Davis, West Sacramento, and Bay Point. Professor Davis was part of design/build teams that won two competitions to replace the aging University Village in Albany for the University of California. Davis received design awards from the AIA and Progressive Architecture as well as several housing competitions. Publications include three books on housing: The Form of Housing, The Architecture of Affordable Housing, and Designing for the Homeless: Architecture that Works .
Source: College of Environmental Design website.
From the guide to the Sam Davis collection, 1967-2006, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
Vernon Armand DeMars
Vernon Armand DeMars was born in San Francisco, California, in 1908. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1931. After jobs with the National Park Service and travel in the U.S. and Europe, DeMars worked from 1936-1942 as district architect for the Farm Security Administration's regional office in San Francisco. The FSA provided housing to migrant farm workers, planned and built rural camps, schools, clinics, and community centers, and constructed wartime housing for over 7000 military personnel. During his tenure with the FSA, DeMars collaborated with landscape architects Burton Cairns and Garrett Eckbo, and planners Fran Violich and Corwin Mocine, to make lasting contributions to the field of planning and low-cost housing design. Projects included the Farm Workers' Center at Yuba City, California, the Cooperative Farm and Workers' Housing at Chandler, Arizona, and the Woodville Farm Workers' Center near Porterville, California.
In 1939, DeMars, Burton Cairns, Joseph McCarthy, Garrett Eckbo, T.J. Kent Jr., and Francis Violich co-founded Telesis, a city and regional planning organization that was the inspiration for the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR), a public policy think tank on planning and government. He married Betty Bates in the same year, with whom he collaborated on several major projects throughout his career, including one in 1944-1945 that explored the possibilities of row housing and greenbelt planning for the Ladies Home Journal. Betty created the interiors of the models for a traveling exhibition based on the project, entitled "Tomorrow's Small House." She also designed a series of banners for the 1967 opening of Zellerbach Hall at the University of California, Berkeley.
In 1943 DeMars joined the National Housing Agency in Washington DC as Chief of Housing Standards, where he was engaged in research on post-war housing. He subsequently served two years with the Navy as Naval Aide to the Governor of Puerto Rico and advisor on Public Works. After the war he remained on the East Coast and was recognized for his design contributions to the Bannockburn housing cooperative near Washington DC, and the Eastgate apartments in Cambridge, Massachusetts, which housed MIT faculty. From 1947-1949 he was visiting professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
In 1951 DeMars reestablished himself in Berkeley. He lectured in the Department of Architecture for the College of Environmental Design for two years before becoming Professor of Architecture in 1953. He chaired the Department from 1959-1962 and eventually became Professor Emeritus upon his retirement in 1975. Before joining the UC Berkeley faculty he consulted for the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency on Diamond Heights, Hunter's Point and the Western Addition neighborhoods, and produced a report for the Mutual Security Agency's Special Housing program for miners in the Ruhr, Germany. During this period he also collaborated with architect Donald Hardison on several projects in Richmond, California, including Easter Hill Village public housing, which was noted for its attempt to bring individuality to residences in a low-income development. He and Hardison would later submit and win a joint-venture proposal in the competition for creating a new student center and world-class auditorium at UC Berkeley.
DeMars and architect Donald P. Reay established the firm DeMars & Reay in 1955, continued in 1966 as DeMars & Wells with John G. Wells, a principle in DeMars & Reay. The firms' emphasis was housing and community development and covered a wide range of building types and planning problems, demonstrating a diversified architectural approach and flexibility in design application over the next twenty-two years. Major projects accomplished during DeMars' tenure as principle with these firms included the Capitol Towers apartments in Sacramento; San Francisco's Golden Gateway Redevelopment project (with Wurster, Bernardi & Emmons); Mililani New Town in Oahu, Hawaii; the Mt. Angel Abbey Library (with architect Alvar Aalto); the University of California at Berkeley's Student Center and Zellerbach Hall, and the College of Environmental Design's Wurster Hall. DeMars & Wells dissolved in 1977 and was followed by DeMars & Maletic with principle Carl Maletic. The firm's major project was championing the cause of rehabilitating the San Francisco Ferry Building and expanding Embarcadero Plaza after the Embarcadero Freeway was demolished in 1991. The project was a continuation of DeMars' longstanding interest in Willis Polk's concept of creating a major plaza in front of the Ferry Building.
In addition to his many AIA awards, DeMars was a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, and received the Award of Honor for Design Excellence from the Bay Area Chapters of the American Institute of Architects in salute to the Student Center and Zellerbach Hall on the Berkeley campus as "in the tradition of the great European urban plazas and spaces." In 1975 he received the Berkeley Citation, the campus' top honor, and in 1999 the College of Environmental Design honored him as a distinguished alumnus. DeMars received a lifetime achievement award from the American Institute of Architects and the Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Environmental Design in 2003.
Sources: Biographical clip files, Environmental Design Archives.
From the guide to the Vernon DeMars collection, 1933-2005, (Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.)
|creatorOf||Bernard J. S. Cahill records, 1889-1938||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Robert Tetlow collection, 1949-1987, 1953-1985||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Alfred C. Williams records, 1926-1991, (1926-1948)||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Blake Estate collection, ca. 1922-1998||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Sami Hassid collection, 1932-1989, 1957-1985||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||A.A. and A.M. Cantin collection, 1933-1977||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Claude Stoller collection, 1957-1996||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Ernest and Esther Born collection, 1924-1985||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Casey Kawamoto collection, 1952-1991||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|referencedIn||Julia Morgan Records at the University of California Berkeley, 1893-1988 (bulk 1901-1940)||Environmental Design Archives The Bancroft Library The Bancroft Library, University Archives|
|creatorOf||Records of Helen D. and Prentiss French, 1932-1978||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Olof Dahlstrand collection, 1938, 1947-2004||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Inventory of the Records of the National Peace Garden, 1985-2002||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Jack Robbins Collection, 1955-2007||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Jack Hermann collection, 1947-1989||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Vernon DeMars collection, 1933-2005||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Emerson Knight collection, 1898-1965||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|referencedIn||John Galen Howard Records at the University of California Berkeley, 1874-1954 (bulk 1888-1931)||Environmental Design Archives The Bancroft Library The Bancroft Library, University Archives|
|creatorOf||Michael Goodman collection, 1920-1970||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Records of Jack Stafford, 1960-1997||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Stafford L. Jory collection, 1904-1960||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Walter Guthrie records, 1980-2006||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|referencedIn||Greene & Greene virtual archives, 1885-1957||Avery Library Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design. Gamble House (Pasadena, Calif.) Greene and Greene Archives|
|referencedIn||Bernard Maybeck Records at the University of California Berkeley, 1895-1956 (bulk 1902-1940)||Environmental Design Archives The Bancroft Library The Bancroft Library, University Archives|
|creatorOf||St. Francis Wood virtual collection, 1912-1946||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Inventory of the Richard A. Vignolo Collection, 1948-2003 (bulk 1973-2000), 1948-2003||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Burton Litton, 1948-2005 (bulk of 1965-1998), 1948-2005||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Mai Kitazawa Arbegast collection, 1933-2003, 1980-2000||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Winfield Scott Wellington collection, 1931-1968||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||James Ream collection, 1965-1997||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Mario J. Ciampi Records, 1952-1999||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Maunsell Van Rensselaer collection, 1920-1970||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Sam Davis collection, 1967-2006||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|creatorOf||Henrick Bull Collection, 1950-2009||Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design.|
|Place Name||Admin Code||Country|
|San Francisco (Calif.)|
|University of California, Berkeley--Planning|