By Bob Bogard

Modernism Week returns in February, although in a different way than previous years. Local and state requirements for gatherings and social distancing prompted Modernism Week to offer two versions of its popular event – the February Modernism Week Online Experience (Feb. 1 – 28, 2021) and an additional festival featuring in-person events running from April 8-18, 2021. The Modernism Week Online Experience will feature more than 25 newly created programs specifically for Modernism Week, available for on-demand streaming starting February 1, 2021 and available for viewing for the entire month.

The February Online Experience video programs include guided tours and presentations similar to events that would usually be available during Modernism Week as in-person events, including the popular Modernism Week Signature Home Tour Video Series. Additional encore presentations of programs previously offered in October are also be available. Ticket prices range from $15-$45 per event, with a few free film screenings. The pricing allows for one household with one viewing device to participate.

In addition, Modernism Week will offer an online auction during the February festival that will feature unique architectural experiences and specialty items not typically available to the public. The auction and tickets for these online programs will be available for purchase starting February 1 at

Here are some highlights of the programs offered in February:


Signature Home Tour Video Series, Episode 1 (Encore Performance), $35

Signature Home Tour Video Series, Episode 2,  $45

These are the first two installments of the Modernism Week Signature Home Tour Video Series. This guided home tour series profiles five significant residences located in various neighborhoods in Palm Springs, all with unique architectural character and featuring a variety of architectural styles. Episode 2 showcases 5 new houses, including The Morse Residence (by Hal Levitt, 1961), The Cahuilla Hills House by O’Donnell + Escalante (by Lance O’Donnell, 2009), The Southridge Glass House (by William Cody, 1963), Trina Turk’s Ship of the Desert (by Erle Webster and Adrian Wilson, 1936), and Martyn Lawrence Bullard’s Villa Grigio (by James McNaughton, 1963).

Architectural Driving Tour of Palm Springs, $45

This fun and informative “top down” architectural tour of Palm Springs is conducted from a 1966 convertible Mustang. This, one-of-a-kind touring adventure around the neighborhoods of Palm Springs takes one of the top tour guides from the Premier Double-Decker Architectural Tour bus and puts him behind the wheel to give you a private tour. As he explores the city, he will also take go inside some of the most beautiful and exclusive homes designed by the Desert Modernist architects who lived and worked in Palm Springs.


Hollywood Revisited Online Musical Extravaganza $25

From the 1930’s to the 1960’s, Hollywood film directors demanded spectacular costumes and studios hired the biggest designers and fashion icons to bring to life the glitz and the glamour that moviegoers expected. Collector Greg Schreiner assembled a stunning collection of more than 300 original designer masterpieces and shares his collection while acclaimed vocalists sing and dance to movie-related music while wearing the original costumes.


Albert Frey – Part 1: The Architectural Envoy,” $10

“Albert Frey- Part 2: The Architectural Interpreter,” $10

These two films reveal the mystique of Albert Frey, an influential architectural master who helped bring modernism to the United States.

“The 1931 Aluminaire House Comes to Palm Springs,” $15

This film tells the story of the Aluminaire House, designed by Frey and A. Lawrence Kocher. It begins when Aluminaire was designed for a 1931 exhibition in New York City and ends with it finding a permanent location on the grounds of the Palm Springs Art Museum.

“Neutra – Survival Through Design,” $10

This is a comprehensive documentary encompassing the 125-year life, work and times of Architect Richard Neutra, a legacy that continues today through his son Dion Neutra.

“Landis Gores In New Canaan: An Architect’s Story,” $15

Landis Gores is one of “The Harvard Five” architects who settled in New Canaan in the 1940s. This presentation explores his career, family life and his unique vision with those who knew him best.

“Modern New Canaan – Evolution of Design: Bauhaus| Harvard GSD| New Canaan,” $15

Discover how the town of New Canaan became a center of midcentury modern architecture, including a visit to three of New Canaan’s most iconic houses and the homeowners who cherish them.

“Moshe Safdie and Frank Lloyd Wright at Crystal Bridges Museum,” $15

This new film was created for Modernism Week by curators at the famed Crystal Bridges Museum (opened in 2011 by founder, Alice Walton, in Bentonville Arkansas). It looks at the breathtaking architecture and natural setting of the museum, designed by architect Moshe Safdie.

“Introducing Rudolph Michael Schindler, Architect,” $15

This film by architect Josh Gorrell includes key examples (all filmed on location) of Rudolph Schindler’s career, used to demonstrate his evolving design work from the 1920s to the 1940s.


The Desert Modernists Video Series with Alan Hess, $45

Modernism Week introduces a new series highlighting the Desert Modernists, the midcentury architects who envisioned Palm Springs. In this video series, Alan Hess, author, architect and Modernism Week Board of Directors member, will give three brief, capsule presentations on a select group of the most revered Desert Modern architects from the midcentury period.

Charles Phoenix Retro Disneyland, $45

With unbridled enthusiasm and keen expertise, Charles Phoenix lavishes commentary on spectacular Kodachrome slides taken at the granddaddy in the 50s and 60s. Get the backstories and glories of Main Street USA, Adventureland, Fantasyland, Frontierland and Tomorrowland and experience long-gone attractions, including the original Tomorrowland when it was promoted as ‘The World of 1986.

Mod with A Twist, $15

These newly recorded talks feature audience favorites of some of the best Mod with a TWIST from previous programs, presented by the founders of Makerville.

Broken Glass – Edith Farnsworth and Mies van der Rohe’ $15

Filmed on location at the famed Farnsworth House, author Alex Beam tells the story of the flawed architect-client relationship that led to the one of the greatest architectural masterpieces of the twentieth century.

Edith Farnsworth, Mies van der Rohe and the Creation of a Modernist Masterpiece – A Conversation with Author Alex Beam at the Farnsworth House, $15

Filmed on location at the famed Farnsworth House, author Alex Beam tells the story of the flawed architect-client relationship that led to the one of the greatest architectural masterpieces of the twentieth century.

Fast Forward – Part 1 (Encore Performance) $25

Fast Forward – Part 2 (NEW) $35

FAST FORWARD 2 is a conference designed to bring together architects, designers, educators, community members, preservationists, and architecture buffs to discuss the future of architecture and urban planning in the greater Palm Springs area.

Regarding Paul R. Williams,  $15

A conversation with architecture historian Alan Hess and photographer Janna Ireland on her experience and insights photographing African-American architect Paul R. Williams’ work for her new book.

Modern In The Middle – Chicago Houses 1929-1975, $15

Fans of mid-20th century modernism, especially as it took shape in the Midwest, will want to view this talk that explores how Chicago and its suburbs played a pivotal but overlooked role in developing the modern single-family house.

‘Philip Johnson – a Visual Biography’ and the Glass House, $15

This conversation with Ian Volner, author of the new book, ‘Philip Johnson – A Visual Biography’, and Hilary Lewis, Chief Curator and Creative Director of the Glass House, includes new footage of the Glass House, landscape and ensemble of structures on the 47-acre compound.

Tour of Tony Duquette’s Dawnridge Estate with Hutton Wilkinson, $15

Explore Dawnridge, the legendary home of designer Tony Duquette with Hutton Wilkinson and Jaime Rummerfield. Located in Beverly Hills, Dawnridge is one of the most creatively designed and eccentric homes in America. 

Richard Neutra’s 1929 Lovell Health House, $15

Architect Josh Gorrell takes participants on an up-close tour of one of largest residences designed by Richard Neutra, a house with iconic worldwide status and represents Neutra’s best work. For more information and to check out all programs visit