William Lingenbrink’s Modernistic Art Deco Los Angeles

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Lingenbrink’s building. He obviously embraced the Art Deco style without reservation.


William Lingenbrink (1870-1949) was real estate developer, art gallery owner, patron of architect Rudolph Schlindler and a promoter of “modernistic” architecture. In addition to several collaborations with Schlindler and developing the not very successful artist’s retreat Park Moderne, Lingenbrink produced publications picturing early Los Angeles Art Deco. What makes these especially interesting are the photographs of small, very early Deco storefronts predating the streamline style, which, like the Depression, would arrive soon enough.

Except for skyscrapers like the the Eastern Columbia building and the Pellissier building (home to the Wiltern theater) most of this portfolio’s examples are just memories. But maybe there are more survivors than I realize. Recognize any?


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Imagine having to keep this place clean. And why would anybody settle for 6% interest on their savings when they could play the stock market….


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Artist’s rendition of Eastern Columbia building entrance.


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The shop on the left is seeking its first tenant.


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This one looks vaguely familiar. Long Beach, maybe?


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The Nikabob Cafe–and that looks like one of those traffic lights with the paddles. The sign on the right says Elizabeth-Claire.


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Maddux Airlines, where you could pick up a ticket to Havana. As with other airlines, Maddux found Art Deco was a good fit.


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I did spot Moxley’s Dog & Cat Hospital (top right):

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Moxley’s at top right.

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A very early shot of Moxley’s. Looks like they still had to fetch the dog (sorry!)

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There he is! (Or she.) Moxley’s today. It hasn’t been a pet hospital for many years but it’s pretty easy to guess its original purpose.


Thanks to Michael Locke’s excellent and informative contributions to Flickr, I located Lingenbrink’s home. As far as Art Deco goes, a bit of a disappointment, but the chimney was a treat.

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William Lingenbrink’s home. It’s been photographed many times so here’s a new version from my infrared camera.

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Some interesting modernistic decoration on the house’s otherwise plain chimney.


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