Paul Revere Williams and Atomic Ranch Magazine
Last summer, I worked on a project with the University of Memphis Art Museum photographing houses in Los Angeles and New York designed by the architect Paul Revere Williams. These photos, along with the images of several other photographers, were assembled into an exhibit at the museum. Atomic Ranch magazine picked up this story and ran a few of our photos and wrote a great article about Williams and the project.
Architectural photography wasn’t a thing I thought I would be particularly interested in, to be honest. My strong suit is working with people and my first love is fashion so it was a stretch for me. But most photography is about solving problems, however, and problems are interesting. William’s story is also very compelling and inspiring which made making the photos all the more important.
In art school they teach you that intention is important. No decisions should be left to chance, and if they are, you should have a reason to back it up. William’s designed houses with the intention that they would be lived in. This sounds obvious, but many houses, not to mention buildings in general, are designed only to be habitable at best. His understanding of light and space was way before his time as he was able to construct small homes that made the most complete use of sunlight and livable areas. I’m not an architectural expert by any means but I learned a lot about the intentionality of design through photographing this project. Albeit, its made me quite a snob as of late, as I go on long winded diatribes about every new faux stucco retail store erected in my neighborhood.