Trash Tuesday #59: Where Getting it Cheap is Part of the Esthetic

by Pasadena Adjacent

This handcrafted headboard was found curbside on Pinecrest Drive near the start of the Mount Wilson Toll Road. (adjacent to one of myterminal envy tour” homes.)Horse shoes courtesy of the Hiker.

It reminds me of the hand hewn woodwork found in the interior of the journalist Charles F Lummis’ home El Alisal (Place of the Sycamores) located here in the “Garvanza Adjacent” Highlands.

Photographic glass plates in Lummis door frame: enlarge for detail

“Any fool can write a book and most of them are doing it; but it takes brains to build a house.” – Charles Fletcher Lummis

Word verses material construction. Seems Lummis found an ingenious compromise between the two. While at Harvard he published his first work, Birch Bark Poems, a small volume he hadprinted on paper thin sheets of birch bark.

Mr Lummis went on to use local materials to build his home above the Arroyo (oak, sycamore, river rock). He also drew upon a popular 19th century technique of acquiring cheap glass through the reuse of photographic glass plates. You might recall that famed photographer Mathew Brady and his documented horrors of the Civil War, found a second life as faded memories discovered among the glass paynes adorning eastern greenhouses.

Full Circle: In 2003 Michael Oatman, together with a class of architecture students incorporated 2500 glass negatives culled from a database of more than 15,000 turn of the 20th century criminal mug shots.

Big Orange Landmark #68 tour starts Here

Lummis’ “A Tramp Across the Continent” documenting his Feb 1, 1885 arrival in Los Angeles, after walking 3,507 miles from Ohio starts Here.