Temple Emanuel | Los Angeles Conservancy
Temple Emanuel
Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

Temple Emanuel

Temple Emanuel is remarkable as a recently refurbished icon of Modernism in Beverly Hills, as well as the first religious building designed by prolific Modern architect Sidney Eisenshtat. Completed in 1953, the building reflects Eisenshtat’s belief that synagogues should be horizontal rather than vertical because God dwells among the people with no intermediary. It is a low yet massive building clad mostly in brick, with a main façade that features brick arches tapering to fine points before they connect with the ground, making the building seem much lighter.

The main entrance features a circular concrete canopy, open in the middle and supported by simple posts. This circular motif continues into the main sanctuary, which is likewise curved for a feeling of inclusion and unity. Like other synagogues and academic buildings Eisenshtat would go on to create, Temple Emanuel exhibits a masterly shaping of simple brick and concrete into expressive, evocative forms. His design evokes a tent in the desert, like those used by the ancient Hebrews. Original art pieces, including metal sculptures, stained glass windows, and a mosaic mural, were partially covered up by interior modifications over the years but were exposed and preserved as part of a 2011 renovation by Rios Clementi Hale Studios.

Orville Wright Middle School
Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

Orville Wright Middle School

Facing an enormous population explosion in the postwar period and not nearly enough classrooms for students, LAUSD solicited designs for the school building program from a variety of talented architects vying to design the ideal school.
Gibbs & Gibbs Office Building
Photo by Sarah Gilbert

Gibbs & Gibbs Office Building

Created as an advertisement as well as a building demonstrating the firm's prowess and design sensibility, the building still stands as a great example of the Long Beach firm's rich architectural legacy.