Charles Willard Moore

Moore “mixed high architecture and high camp with gleeful abandon” (Filler 52). When he died in 1993 of a heart attack at age 68, friends and admirers praised his work and accomplishments saying that he left a “living legacy” in the thousands of architects he trained and inspired. He was also described as the most influential architecture professor (most notably Yale for ten years and the University of California at Los Angeles) of his generation. “Unlike many other star architects he was also a great teacher, and for over forty years he imparted his vast knowledge and passionate beliefs with unparalleled intelligence, gentleness, and merriment to generations of students” (Filler-1994 52).

For more than forty years, Moore shared his vision with students that there is no higher purpose for an architect than to create homes and public places that have the ability to satisfy and comfort people, as well as provide a benefit atmosphere in which one’s inner life can be satisfied along with the physical need for shelter and comfort.

During his career, he produced twelve books, and unlike most books on architecture written by architects, he illustrated that it was possible to have a larger vision about building other than the desire to be new, different, or unique. He was a writer who was also an architect rather than the usual architect who thinks he can write. The most memorable and interesting of his books is “The Place of Houses,” written with Gerald Allen and Donlyn Lyndon (his books always had co-authors) and published in 1974 (Filler-1996 80).

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Moore was the typical California and is best-known work for his “major” work found along the coast of California from Los Angeles to his Sea Ranch on the Mendocino coast north of San Francisco, a landmark of ecologically sensitive design built in the 1960s. His work ranges from the nonconformist Faculty Club at the University of California at Santa Barbara to the University of California a…

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Charles Willard Moore
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