Richard Neutra

A Brief Biography

Richard Joseph Neutra was an Austrian-American architect who lived from 1892-1970. Neutra was born in the Leopoldstadt district of Vienna, Austria. Richard Neutra moved to the United States by 1923 and became a naturalized citizen in 1929.

In California, he became celebrated for the strict geometry and airy spaces that symbolized a West Coast variation on the mid-century modern home. In 1932, Neutra was included in the seminal MoMA exhibition on modern architecture, curated by Philip Johnson and Henry-Russell Hitchcock.

One of his famous quotes was:

Architects must have a razor-sharp sense of individuality.

In 1949 Neutra formed a partnership with Robert E. Alexander that lasted until 1958, which finally allowed him to expand on his residential design experience into larger commercial and institutional buildings.

Richard Neutra died in Wuppertal, Germany, on April 16, 1970, at the age of 78.

Key works

Lovell Health House | Los Angeles [1929]
Von Sternberg House | Northridge, California [1935]
Kaufmann House | Palm Springs, California [1946]
Maslon House | Rancho Mirage, California [1962]
Van der Leeuw House | Rotterdam, the Netherlands [1966]

Photo of the Kaufmann House taken by Rex Brown, entitled “kaufmann-house”
(CC BY-ND 2.0)