An Artistic History of 1660 Redcliff: A Silver Lake Mid-Century Modern

The mid-century modern home at 1660 Redcliff Street in Silver Lake was built in 1950 by architect E. Richard Lind. In the 1930s, Lind was the protégé and draftsman of Rudolph Schindler. The pair helped to shape the modern look and feel of Los Angeles at the time. Lind’s contemporaries in LA also included Richard Neutra and Lloyd Wright, Harwell H. Harris, Gregory Ain, Raphael S. Soriano, Whitney R. Smith, Wayne Williams, A. Quincy Jones, and John Lautner.

Five years before there were any Case Study Houses, Schindler, in collaboration with his draftsman E. Richard Lind, set out to develop a series of three small houses: flexible in both their open floor plans and easy indoor-outdoor circulation, designed to meet the universal needs of single-family housing. 1660 Redcliff is a prime example of the creative ways he learned to apply the lessons he learned from the master throughout his early career.

Commissioned by Herman and Vivian Millman, who had previously lived nearby on Lucille, the Millman’s and their three children lived at the property for twenty years. 1660 Redcliff was very much a collaboration between architect and owner. Herman began his career in the garment industry, but after working with Lind on 1660 Redcliff, he developed a passion for architecture and real estate and began a career in real estate development that ultimately spanned five decades. One of Herman and Vivian’s children, their son Dan Millman, is the author of the inspirational book, “Way of the Peaceful Warrior.”

The autobiographical self-help book has been a bestseller since its first publication in 1980. Dan Millman grew up in the house and lived there until he departed for UC Berkeley in 1966. The book is dedicated to his parents and several scenes take place at the house. The book was turned into a film Peaceful Warrior starring Nick Nolte.

After their children left home, The Millman’s sold the house in 1970 to David and Patsy Tompkins. Patsy was an artist who went by Tish Tompkins.

Artwork: “Air Force in Space”. Artist: Tish Tompkins.

Little else is known about her, but some of her art is included below. Something special about the home clearly inspires its owners to stay for quite a while, nearly 20 years each to be exact. Patsy lived at 1660 Redcliff for the next 27 years until her death in 1997.

Artwork: “Our Flying Women: Artist: Tish Tompkins, USAF Art Collection

Artwork: “Missileers at Vandenburg”. Artist: Tish Tompkins, US Air Force Art Collection.

That year, the home changed hands to only its third ever owner, Laura Graham. Laura Graham is an award-winning sound editor from many of your favorite films including The Revenant, Deadpool, Straight Outta Compton, The Help, Sex and the City, Hairspray, War of the Worlds, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Black Hawk Down, and many more.

2019 marks the first year this creative and inspiring “forever home” has been on the market in over twenty years. In 2020, the home will celebrate its 70th anniversary, which begs the question: by next year who will be the lucky fourth owner of 1660 Redcliff Street in Silver Lake?

If you would like to view 1660 Redcliff Street, call me at (323) 697-3040 or email me at jacqueline.tager@sothebyshomes.com.

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