Every tale must have an end. I like to stretch mine, somewhat. I love L.A. And, this is the heart of the City.
Having given the camera back to my Really Big Thithter, she turned it on me, unawares. I’d gotten gregarious with the young woman at the bakery counter.
The sidewalk at the entrance, which RBS photographed (I hadn’t thought of it.) This is original. From @1935.
Now, for just a taste of L.A. at street level. This is the facade of Clifton’s. Before the renovation, this was covered in tin around 1960 (can you believe it?).
It now looks more like it did circa 1939.
Two doors along, is the Palace Theater, one of Los Angeles’ dozen or so remaining movie palaces (look them up – it’s a fascinating history of the film industry) that have been preserved from the ‘10s (the Rialto), to the mid-30s (the Orpheum). These buildings speak volumes of the grandiosity of the early twentieth century. And, a people, just wanting to live a little in very hard times.
And, directly across the street from the entrance to the (underground) parking lot, is the Los Angeles Theater (I’ve never been inside this one, though I have been in many of them, on tour with the L.A. Conservancy), one of the first Movie Palaces, built in, I believe90, next week, 1921. Note that many of the old theaters have gone through various iterations as churches (this one, the United Artists Theater – Jebus Saves, on the Simpsons, – The Million Dollar of 1919, etc.) A very few (The Orpheum, notably), The Alex, in Glendale, The Wiltern, in West L.A., the Fox, in Riverside, are fully restored, and functional, and used as performance venues, on a limited basis.
This shot, of the Los Angeles Theater, 1932, shows the tallest building on the West Coast, the Bank One (ersatz, Library Tower, 1989(?) (74 stories). in the background.
The ingress/egress to the parking lot. Dad was all, “Why are we going in here?” (90, next week).
This is the lobby through which one gains access to the parking lot ($9.95 All Day).
An elevator door. This building was put up in the ‘30s. They don’t put nearly the amount of artistic effort into buildings, these days. They haven’t in a very long time. This elevator does not go to the underground parking lot ($9.95 All Day). We used the stairs. 90. Next week. I took this picture just before the security guard walked up and said, “Photography isn’t allowed in this building.” “Why?”, queried I. “There’s a sign on the door that says so,” says the mindless boob. Being the architecture lover and belligerent photographer that I am, I asked, “What’s that sign gonna do to me? Am I gonna get spanked?” “The sign says, ‘No Photography’”. He probably couldn’t even read a sign to save his life. Beloved Buddies, you don’t want to know how homicidal I can feel when someone tells me I can’t take pictures of beautiful architecture. There’s an ache that starts way down deep, following which, I can taste the bile that wants desperately to be expelled on the offending party’s face. But, you don’t want to know that.
And, the final photo. The cel fin. You may wonder, What holds all these gorgeous old structures up? Those architects didn’t miss a trick. This is what I saw when I looked out the window of my buggy, just before putting it in “D”. This, again, was built in the thirties, tailored to 1930s auto design traditions (very narrow entrances – not set up for a Silverado). I’ve been to the loading docks, seven stories below street level, in the Library Tower of 1989. Big, Big difference. But the Libray Tower doesn’t look like this, underground.
Are you done, now?
I’m done. Go back to sleep.