OBITUARY GLEN HOWARD SMALL 1937-?

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OBITUARY, BY GLEN HOWARD SMALL FOR GLEN HOWARD SMALL

THERE COMES A POINT IN ONES LIFE WHERE YOU REALIZE THE NEXT BIG EVENT IN LIFE IS DEATH.

HISTORY HAS SHOWN MANY WAYS OF PREPARING FOR THE INEVITABLE END, FROM TAKING OUT A HUGE INSURANCE POLICY TO BUILDING A PYRAMID TO ASSURE AFTER LIFE.

THE PRESENT DAY IMMEDIATE CONSEQUENCES OF DEATH IS AN OBITUARY IN THE NEWSPAPER, MAGAZINE, OR INTERNET. WHO COMPOSES THE COMMENTS RANGES FROM THE MUNDANE CITY DESK CLERK TO ESTEEMED SCHOLARS. IF YOU ARE SIGNIFICANT ENOUGH, THERE ARE THE BIOGRAPHIC BOOKS. WHAT SLANT OR INPUT THEY TAKE IS ALL PART OF THE MIX.

GLEN AT THIS PRINTING, HAS NO LIFE THREATENING HEALTH PROBLEMS OF WHICH HE IS AWARE, NOR IS HE INCLINED TO TAKE HIS LIFE. SO COMING TO GRIPS WITH AN OBITUARY IS WHAT HE IS RECKONING WITH.

GLEN HOWARD SMALL OUTRAN HIS CRITICS HAVING TOO MANY PROJECTS AND VARIOUS DIRECTIONS TO COVER IN A CONCISE BOOK OR DOCUMENTARY. HIS FILM MAKER DAUGHTER LUCIA SMALL GAVE A STAB AT IT IN 2002 COMBINING HIS WORK AND HER DEALING WITH BEING RAISED IN A DIVORCE FAMILY. HER AWARD-WINNING FILM,”MY FATHER THE GENIUS”, HAS A CULT FOLLOWING, BUT HAS LIMITED COVERAGE OF HIS WORK. LUCIA PROJECTED A SEQUEL ” MY FATHER THE GENIUS TWO,” BUT LACKED FUNDING AND INTEREST TO MAKE IT HAPPEN. AS ONE VIEWER STATED, “I COULD LISTEN TO THAT GUY ALL DAY”. THE PRESS HAD A FIELD DAY JUDGING HIS PARENTHOOD ABILITIES AND IGNORING HIS WORK. BUT HE RECEIVED DOWN ON YOUR KNEES PRAISE LETTERS FROM VIEWERS.

SMALL WAS A FREE SPIRIT WHO SPOKE HIS MIND, OFTEN CRITICIZING THE SACRED PROFESSIONAL ARCHITECTS. THIS IS SCARY TO THE SERVICE-BASED ARCHITECTURAL PROFESSION SERVING THE RICH AND THEREFORE SMALL WAS LABELED THE OUTSIDER AND NOT SOUGHT OUT FOR JURIES, LECTURES, COMMISSIONS ETC. HE WAS JUST TOO CONTROVERSIAL TO HAVE AROUND. THERE IS A CODE IN THE PROFESSION TO NOT CRITICIZE. THERE WERE NO SACRED COWS FOR HIM. HE BELIEVED IN TELLING IT STRAIGHT, SHOWING THE INJUSTICES, INFERIORITY, AND WEAKNESSES OF THE ARCHITECTURAL PROFESSION, BUT ALSO PRAISING WHEN DESERVED. HE LOVED ARCHITECTURE AND BEING AN ARCHITECT.

HIS BLOG WAS HIS MOUTHPIECE — A BOOK IN PROGRESS IN WHICH SELECTED SEGMENTS ARE QUOTED AND OTHERS PARTS IGNORED.

ARCHITECT GLEN HOWARD SMALL PASSED AWAY ON _______ (TO BE DETERMINED) DUE TO _______ (TO BE DETERMINED). THE SELF PROCLAIMED OUTSIDER GENIUS ARCHITECT BEST REMEMBERED FOR HIS PROPOSALS TO PUSH THE ENVELOPE OF HOW TO DEVELOP ARCHITECTURAL URBAN SOLUTIONS THAT PORTRAYED DEVELOPMENTS BASED ON BUILDING IN HARMONY WITH THE NATURAL CONSTRAINTS OF THE PLANET. HIS PROJECTS USED THE TECHNOLOGY OF OUR ERA AND PROJECTED WHAT COULD BE IF THE SOCIETY CHOSE TO IMPLEMENT THEM. HE WAS A VISIONARY WHO BACKED UP HIS PROPOSAL WITH MODELS, DRAWINGS , EXPLANATIONS AND RESEARCH. HE WAS CALLED THE FATHER OF THE CONTEMPORARY SUSTAINABLE GREEN MOVEMENT IN URBAN ARCHITECTURE. DISMISSED BY THE PROFESSION AS BEING TOO FAR OUT; YET SMALL EXPLAINED THE SIMILARITIES TO BUILT PROJECT TECHNOLOGIES AVAILABLE TODAY THE ULTIMATE INSULT WAS BEING IGNORED BY THE PROFESSION.

CONCURRENT WITH HIS VISIONS HE BUILT STRUCTURES RANGING FROM RESIDENTIAL HOUSES TO ART MUSEUMS TO A PERFORMING ACOUSTICAL SHELL THAT DEMONSTRATED HIS PHILOSOPHY OF SENSUOUS UNIVERSAL BEAUTY. THE DESIGNS ELICITING “OH’S AND AHS” AND CONFIRMATION FROM AN APPRECIATING COMMUNITY BY UPLIFTING THEIR SPIRITS.

HE IGNORED THE STYLES IN THE ARCHITECTURAL PROFESSION AND SOUGHT NATURE TO INSPIRE HIM WITH FUNCTIONAL SYSTEMS THAT PRODUCED UNIVERSAL BEAUTY.

HE WORKED AT ALL SCALES OF DESIGN FROM CERAMIC POTS, LIGHT FIXTURES, TABLES, CHAIRS AND SOFAS THAT HE PERSONALLY BUILT. HE HAD RENDERING SKILLS THAT HE USED TO DEPICT HIS PROJECTS.

GLEN WAS AN EDUCATOR — A FOUNDING PROFESSOR OF SCI-ARC — WHO GAVE UP HIS TENURED ASSOCIATE PROFESSORSHIP AT CAL POLY POMONA TO START SCI-ARC (SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA OF ARCHITECTURE) IN 1972. HIS STUDENT PROJECTS OF FOLDED PLATE STRUCTURE ON PISMO BEACH 1971 AND COMMUNITY STUDENT PERSONAL LIVING MODULARS IN A MINI MEGA STRUCTURE IN 1972 SPEARHEADED THE REVOLT FROM CAL POLY POMONA TO CREATE SCI-ARC. THE FACULTY INCLUDED RAY KAPPE, DIRECTOR, GLEN SMALL, (BOTH TENURED) AUDI LAHTI, BILL SOMONIAN, JIM STAFFORD, THOM MAYNE, AND SHELLY KAPPE. GLEN GENERATED NUMEROUS PUBLICATIONS OF STUDENT WORK IN THE LOS ANGELES TIMES THAT EXEMPLIFIED THE CREATIVE SPRIT OF LIBERATION THAT SCI-ARC REPRESENTED. THE STUDENT PROJECTS BEING HANDS-ON BUILT PROJECTS RANGING FROM AN URBAN ODYSSEY OF BIKING AROUND LOS ANGELES WITH AN INTEGRATED CUSTOM DESIGNED TENTS FOR A COMMUNITY OF STUDENTS, TO BUILDING OF A POLYHEDRAL PLAY SCULPTURE FOR AN ORPHANAGE IN MEXICO, TO A HOMELESS HOUSING MODULAR BOX SYSTEM FOR SANTA MONICA, TO REZONING SANTA MONICA GREEN.

HE WAS THE HEAD OF THE FUTURIST PROGRAM OF SCI-ARC AND ORCHESTRATED LECTURE SERIES DEALING WITH ECOLOGICAL AND POLITICAL CONCERNS IN LOS ANGELES.

THE 18 YEARS AT SCI-ARC AS A TENURED CORE BOARD PROFESSOR PROVIDED THE FUNDING AND SECURITY TO ALLOW FOR HIS RESEARCH OF NUMEROUS STUDENT/FACULTY PROJECTS : BIOMORPHIC BIOSPHERE, GREEN MACHINE, HONG KONG PEAK INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION, TURF TOWN ,JUNGLE THEATER, ESCONDIDO CITY HALL COMPETITION , TATAMI MAT ETC. THE GREEN MACHINE RECEIVED A FEDERAL BLOCK GRANT AND SECTION 8 HOUSING GRANT AND CHOSEN FOR THE PARIS BIENNIALLY.

AFTER 18 YEARS, THERE WAS A CHANGING OF THE DIRECTORSHIP FROM RAY KAPPE TO MICHAEL ROTUNDI THAT RESULTED IN A BITTERLY FOUGHT TERMINATION OF SMALL. THAT WAS SPEARHEADED BY THOM MAYNE WHO BLATANTLY RENEGED ON TENURE PROMISED TO ORIGINAL FOUNDING FACULTY MEMBERS.

GLEN MOVED TO THE OREGON COAST AND BUILT A FEW SENSUOUS WOOD STRUCTURES INCLUDING THE TRIAD GALLERY AND HIS OWN RESIDENCE IN SEAL ROCK.

FROM 2000-2005 HE AND ROGER LEWITES, A FORMER STUDENT FROM SCI-ARC, BUILT NUMEROUS CIVIC STRUCTURES IN NICARAGUA FOR THE MAYOR OF MANAGUA, HERTY LEWITES , CULMINATING IN THE CONCHA ACUSTICA — AN ACOUSTICAL SHELL THAT BECAME THE SYMBOL OF MANAGUA. ALL THE CIVIL PROJECTS EMPHASIZED UNIVERSAL BEAUTY. THE POPULAR HERTY LEWITIES HAVING AN UNTIMELY QUESTIONABLE DEATH WHILE RUNNING AGAINST DANIEL ORTEGA FOR PRESIDENT IN 2006. HIS ARCHITECTURAL CIVIC PROJECTS WERE LATER DESTROYED BY ROSARIO MURILO, ORTEGA’S WIFE, TO ERASE THE HERTY LEWITES LEGACY. SMALL’S ATTEMPTS TO BUILD IN NICARAGUA HALTED AFTER HERTY LEWITES DEATH. HE WAS BLACK BALLED BY THE GOVERNMENT.

SMALL PRACTICED POOR MONEY MANAGEMENT IN THE ECONOMIC DOWNTURN IN 2009. HIS LAST RESORT WAS REACHING OUT TO FRIENDS TO KEEP HIM SOLVENT. BUT THE DEBTS OVERWHELMED HIM. HE HAS SPENT THE LAST YEARS OF HIS LIFE TEACHING TEMPORARILY AT THE UNIVERSITY OF OREGON, SAN FRANCISCO ACADEMY OF ART UNIVERSITY , AND MAKING PROPOSALS FOR NICARAGUA AND USA.
HE SOUGHT TO RETURN TO SCI-ARC TO TEACH A RESEARCH STUDIO, BUT WAS STONE WALLED BY DIRECTOR ERIC MOSS.

DESIGN CAME EASILY TO GLEN AND HE COULD COME UP WITH SOPHISTICATED DESIGNS WITHIN HOURS. HE LOVED THE PROCESS AND HE HAD ALL THE GIFTS TO MAKE IT HAPPEN EXCEPT THAT OF SELLING HIMSELF IN A COMMERCIAL WORLD. HIS BEST CLIENT BEING HERTY LEWITES, WHO WANTED A POWERFUL DESIGN QUICKLY, RESPECTED THE DESIGN AND BUILT THE PROJECTS.

SMALL WAS WASTED BY THE SOCIETY NOT USING HIS TALENT TO BUILD AND INSPIRE. ALL OF HIS BUILT PROJECTS WERE LOVED, SO HE WAS ASSURED THAT HIS MANY PROPOSALS NOT BUILT WOULD HAVE CHANGED THE WORLD SIGNIFICANTLY FOR THE BETTER. HE WAS BITTER ABOUT THOSE WHO IGNORED OR REJECTED HIS WORK. HE FELT HE HAD AN OBVIOUS VISION OF WHAT SHOULD BE AND COULD BE, OTHERS ARCHITECTS, PLANNERS, AND DEVELOPERS IN CONTROL THRASHED AROUND AND BUILT THE MESS OF OUR CITIES.

IN 2010, SMALL STARTED HIS BLOG smallatlarge.com WHICH GAVE HIM A VOICE OF WHAT COULD BE HEARD OR IGNORED. OVER A HUNDRED BLOGS HAVE BEEN WRITTEN BY SMALL EXPLAINING HIS PROJECTS, OBITUARIES OF HIS ARCHITECTURAL FRIENDS — JOHN LAUTNER, JOHN JOHANSEN AND ALLYN MORRIS — AND CRITICIZING THE INJUSTICES IN THE PROFESSION. THE BLOG MASTER BEING TIM BARNES, A FORMER STUDENT OF SIGNIFICANT SKILLS PRACTICING ARCHITECTURE.

THE DOWNTOWN TROPOSPHERE IN 2011 WAS AN ECO TRANSPARENT TENT MEMBRANE CREATING A CONSTANT TROPICAL CLIMATE IN DOWNTOWN URBAN CENTERS. THIS WAS HIS LATEST LARGE SCALE GREEN PROPOSAL.

HE WAS ALWAYS ONTO THE THE NEXT DESIGN TILL THE VERY END. HIS LAST VENTURE WAS A DESERT ARCHITECTURAL RETREAT IN JOSHUA TREE, CA, WHICH EMPHASIZED LIVING IN HARMONY WITH THE DESERT OFF THE GRID AND DEMONSTRATED SENSUOUS LOW TECH AFFORDABLE CONSTRUCTION FOR DESERTS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD.

HE WAS SUCCESSFUL AT DOING THINGS HIS WAY AND VOICED HIS APPROVAL BY NOT WANTING TO TRADE HIS LIFE OR CHANGE IT. HIS WORK IS FOR POSTERITY TO EVALUATE.

ASKED WHAT HE WANTED TO BE KNOWN FOR, HE ANSWERED, “THE BIOMORPHIC BIOSPHERE AND SPIN OFFS OF URBAN PLANNING.” HIS GENIUS INPUT INCLUDED THE JOY BROUGHT TO PEOPLE WHO EXPERIENCED HIS BUILT ARCHITECTURE AND A PROFESSORSHIP THAT INSPIRED HIS STUDENTS TO IMPROVE THE PLANET. HE IMPARTED A MORALITY TO DESIGN AND KNEW IF THE MORALITY WAS IN PLACE THE DESIGN WOULD BE FOR THE RIGHT REASONS.

HE WAS A FATHER WHO LOVED HIS CHILDREN, A FRIEND WHO STAYED IN TOUCH AND A REGULAR GUY WHO LOVED NATURE, PEOPLE, MUSIC AND SPORTS.

HE IS SURVIVED BY: WIFE CHRISTIAN LUGO BACA — ARTIST IN MANAGUA, NICARAGUA, CHILDREN: CHRISTINE MARIE SMALL — ARTIST, LUCIA LYNN SMALL — FILM MAKER, JULIE ANN SMALL — EDUCATIONAL BROADCASTER — HUSBAND PHILIP BABICH – LAWYER — AND SON, JUSTIN , YASMINA-DEDIJER SMALL — ARTIST — HUSBAND JAMIE HOLZGRAF –SHIP CAPTAIN, AND SON, SASHA., ERIK DEDIJER-SMALL — CONSTRUCTION SPECIALIST — AND SONS RAVEN DEDIJER- SMALL AND JACOB DEDIJER-SMALL, FIRST WIFE JOANNE SMALL EGGERT — PARALEGAL 1958-1969 AND SECOND WIFE, MILICA DEDIJER — ARCHITECT 1971-1995

BORN SEPT 4, 1937 TO RALPH RUEL SMALL AND OLIVE EVELYN TOWNE IN SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA. HIS FATHER, EDUCATED AT ANTIOCH COLLEGE, WAS AN INTERIOR DESIGNER WHO HAD FURNITURE STORES IN BEVERLY HILLS AND BRENTWOOD CALIFORNIA, AND HIS MOTHER, A GRADUATE OF OCCIDENTAL COLLEGE, WAS A SCHOOL TEACHER; PHYLLIS SMALL, HIS SISTER — FOUR YEARS OLDER — TAUGHT HOME ECONOMICS AND DIED AT FIFTY-FOUR, SURVIVED BY JAMES COOPER, HER HUSBAND, AND THREE CHILDREN: CAROLYN, GREG AND KENT.

GLEN HOWARD SMALL

  • GRADUATE OF WESTWOOD GRAMMAR SCHOOL, WEST LOS ANGELES 1949
  • PALMS JUNIOR HIGH, PALMS LOS ANGELES 1952
  • UNIVERSITY HIGH, AND WEST LOS ANGELES 1955 VARSITY LETTER BASKETBALL AND TRACK
  • UNIVERSITY OF OREGON, BACHELOR OF ARCHITECTURE 1961 ALVIN BOYARSKY AND EARL MOURSUND MENTORS VARSITY TRACK LETTER UNDER BILL BOWERMAN
  • CRANBROOK ACADEMY OF ART, MASTER OF ARCHITECTURE, BLOOMFIELD HILLS MICHIGAN 1967 ELIEL SAARINEN SCHOLARSHIP, GLEN PAULSEN MENTOR
  • REGISTERED CALIFORNIA ARCHITECT 1967, OREGON ARCHITECT 1992, TO DEATH
  • PARTIAL LIST OF OFFICES ASSOCIATED WITH; JOHN LAUTNER, LA CA, ALLYN MORRIS, LA CA, A T WILKES AND LYNN STIENBREUCK ARCHITECTS LA SMITH AND WILLIAMS, SOUTH PASADENA, ANCHEN AND ALLEN, SAN FRANCISCO, HENRICH BULL, SAN FRANCISCO, CHARLES BLESSING, DETROIT PLANNING, GLEN PAULSEN BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MICHIGAN,
  • PARTNERSHIPS: MIGUEL FLORES ARCHITECT, MICHAEL RENDLER AIA ARCHITECT, ROGER LEWITES ARCHITECT

A MEMORIAL SERVICE WILL BE HELD AT HIS JOSHUA TREE ARCHITECTURAL RETREAT ON THE WEEKEND OF BLANK. A PARTY TO BE HELD TO TELL PERSONAL INTERACTIONS WITH GLEN HOWARD SMALL, A TOAST TO LIVING WELL WITH A GALLERY SHOW OF HIS WORK. A PARTY CELEBRATING LIFE WITH HIS FAVORITE MUSIC BLASTING AS LONG AS DESIRED. GIFTS TO BE CHECKS TO HIS SURVIVORS TO PAY FOR ANY DEBTS HE LEAVES.

SO BE THE WISHES OF GLEN HOWARD SMALL. FEBRUARY 2015

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GRANDSON SASHA

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GRANDSON JUSTIN

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JULIE, YASMINA, FRANCO, CHRISTIAN, GLEN, CHRISTINE, JACOB, ERIK, RAVEN, LUCIA 2006

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PHOTO BY BRIAN HANNA

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PHOTO BY ORHAN AYYUCE

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PHOTO BY YASMINA DEDIJER-SMALL

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PHOTO BY JAN MARDIAN

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PHOTO BY JAN MARDIAN

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JULIE AND DAD    PHOTO BY MILICA DEDIJER

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JOANNE AND GLEN

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12 comments

  1. Wonderful to have accomplished so much. Hope there is much more in store. Although death is inevitable, and it is good to be prepared for such eventualities…I question the wisdom of publicly sharing an Obituary when drumming up enthusiasm for current projects.

    • IKE,

      I QUESTION THE WISDOM TOO ABOUT TALKING ABOUT DEATH, BUT I FEEL RELIEVED I GOT IT OFF MY CHEST.

      I EXPECT TO LIVE OVER 100 AND HOPE THEY COME UP WITH ENOUGH NEW PARTS TO KEEP ME GOING FOREVER.

      AS I STATED IN THE PREVIOUS BLOG. IT IS GOOD TO BE ALIVE, WHAT FUN IT IS.

      THANKS FOR YOUR COMMENTS.

      GLEN

  2. viewers, are you out there eric?

    the way this thing is set up for you to access. is to write the comment first and then do the puzzle . i would suggest doing a copy before you do post comment.
    because you might lose the comment and can try again.

    glen

  3. What the f**k?……..thought the next big event in life was the construction of your bio-retreat. Get your priorities straight brothaman!

    LIVE LONG & PROSPER ♥

    • ralph,

      thanks for trying to set me straight. this blog is just an insurance policy.

      you never know when your time is up. so far so good, and yes i am out to create the desert retreat. more on that latter. maybe my quest is beyond my means at the moment. but low tech desert housing is not going to save our cities . where everybody wants to live.

      what is the meaning of life to me, concentrating on important architecture.
      i remember fuller getting older and standing back and looking at the big picture. that is what is important, yet he is ignored beyond his domes.

      i recently seeing beautiful pictures of world cities from the air. no 3d infrastructures anywhere. how retarded can that be?

      glen

  4. readers,

    i continue to get complaints of not being able to comment.

    this posting thing is weird. i make the comment, do the puzzle, and push post comment. the message i get is something is wrong etc. then i reopen my blog and the comment is there. so do not believe everthing you read and please comment.

    thanks,

    glen

  5. Yes glen this is an awkward way to comment. Youn know what I doing, and staying low key. You know that if your blog is umbrelled under Archinect it will reach many many more readers.

    • ERIC,

      GLAD TO SEE YOU CHECKED IN. CAN YOU MAKE THE UMBRELLA THING HAPPEN?

      KEEPING LOW. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

      YOU AT A LOSS TO TALK ABOUT THE BLOG OTHER THAN
      “AWKWARD TO COMMENT” I AM SURE YOU COULD PARAPHRASE THE CONTENT WITH WIT.

      KEEP CLOSE, COME VISIT IN THE DESERT.

      GLEN

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