Classic EOM House Seeks New Custodian

Eric Owen Moss Speaks at the Lawson-Westen House
Eric Owen Moss speaks at the Lawson-Westen House

When I moved to LA almost 20 years ago, this was one of the houses of the moment, the Lawson/Westen House in Brentwood, designed in the early 90s by idiosyncratic architect Eric Owen Moss. The project, described then by architecture critic Joseph Giovaninni, as “… a soaring extravaganza of metal stairs, circular landings, decks and porous views, all spinning within a tilted cone,” is the only ground-up private residence designed by Moss in Los Angeles.  Now the kids have grown, the owners have decided the 5000-plus square feet confection is too much house and have put it on the market, hoping to appeal to those interested in architecture-as-art. Nicholas Mercure, DnA’s new photographer, attended a gathering at the house last week and took these photos. He reports that after 20 or so years, the intricately detailed building is in good shape, and has perhaps even improved with age. There is an extensive use of industrial materials (i-beams, metal flooring, doors, window panes, support posts), and, he says, “the way that metal ages and oxidizes is beautiful.”