Just Above Sunset
March 27, 2005 - Saturday Dawn

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If you use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me.   Note: To see an actual-size high-resolution version of a particular photograph, click on the image.  You will see the full image in a separate window.  These were shot with a Nikon D70 – lens AF-5 Nikor 18-70mm 1:35-4.5G ED or AF Nikor 70-300mm telephoto.

Details, details, details…




Just down the street… The Argyle Hotel at 8358 Sunset Boulevard


Designed in 1929 by architect Leland A Bryant, the Sunset Tower was a landmark from the moment it opened. Its dramatic siting on the Sunset Strip and elegant Art Deco styling, together with its proximity to the famous restaurants and nightclubs of the 30's and 40's, contributed to its appeal.

… Former residents include Howard Hughes, John Wayne, Billie Burke, Joseph Schenck, Paulette Goddard, Zasu Pitts, and even gangster Bugsy Siegel.


… The building has appeared in a number of films, including Wayne's World Part II, Get Shorty, The Player, and Strange Days. Recently, it was the setting for interviews with Ringo Starr for the Beatles Reunion TV special. Its first literary mention was in Raymond Chandler's Farewell My Lovely. In the first film version of that novel, Murder, My Sweet (1944), the line from the book is used as dialogue, making it the first screen reference to the Sunset Tower.

… Most of the exterior surface is smooth concrete, the windows forming a pattern of vertical bands which draw the eye upward and emphasize the height of the structure. Faceted windows accent the corners of the building. Above the street entrance and along the building's set-backs, plaster friezes express a tangle of images, some typical of Deco design, others the product of Bryant's creativity. Flora and Fauna, mythological creatures, zeppelins, and even Adam and Eve share the space comfortably. Atop the tower are engaged pylons and a pineapple finial. In a playful reference to its use, sculptured panels depict the radiator grille of a 20's automobile over the entrance to the garage at the rear.

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From the Art Deco sublime to across Sunset, definitely mixed-mode architecture –

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And talk about mixed-mode, precisely across the street the manikins at the faux western steakhouse that offers karaoke you can watch from the Strip on big television monitors….

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Elsewhere in Hollywood, this, which defies explanation….

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The usual botanical shot – just below the Argyle -

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Copyright 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik
The inclusion of any text from others is quotation
for the purpose of illustration and commentary,
as permitted by the fair use doctrine of U.S. copyright law. 
See the Details page for the relevant citation.

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