Kurt Meyer – 2013 Modern Masters Award

Kurt Meyer, architect (active from 1948-1993)

Originally from Switzerland, Kurt Meyer settled in Los Angeles in 1949, drawn by the visionary modern movement exploding in Southern California. His career achievements include designing the master plans for Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena City College, the Huntington Beach Civic Center, University of Redlands, and San Bernardino County Government Center.

Two important Los Angeles arts patrons, Mark Taper and Bart Lytton, chose him to design their banks. The iconic Lytton Savings (1960) on Sunset Boulevard, now a Chase Bank, typifies national postwar banking trends through its modern architectural design, transparency, and integrated art component. It is one of Los Angeles’ earliest remaining examples of this transformative shift in postwar-era bank design.

Meyer served as Chair of the Community Redevelopment Agency as well as a trustee of the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc). After retiring, Meyer spent ten years exploring and photographing Nepal with his wife, Pamela, before settling back in Beachwood Canyon, just below the Hollywood sign. Meyer passed away in 2014 at the age of 92.

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