What Idyllwild, CA, has to do with Israel? I was in doubt of publishing this video in The Times of Israel. I sent it to some friends. After some positive comments, a friend of mine in Tel Aviv, Yankele Kaufman, wrote “Beautifulissimo!” (Anglo-Italian new word Copyright by Jacob Kaufman !) I changed my mind.

The planets were aligned in an uncommonly rare position: a. architect John Lautner‘s Pearlman cabin in Idyllwild was scheduled to be open to the public on Labor Day, September 4; b. it coincided with our 51st. anniversary; c. we had not been in Idyllwild for about fifteen years; d. Rosh Hashana was around the corner and we didn’t have a real vacation for a very long time; and e. an organic architect from New Zeland, Peter Crenwell, whom I “discovered” while doing research for “The Wright Way,” wrote me that he had a friend living in Idyllwild, Michael Newberry, a painter (rated R for nudity.)

It took us minutes to decide that the time was right for “time out.” I checked for availability at the place we used to go when our daughter was a little girl. We liked it because it was simple and it had a large glazed wall which allowed us to see a forest as soon as we opened our eyes.

We did not have any program other than walking through nature and filming without a script, visiting the Lautner’s cabin, and visiting Michael Newberry’s dtudio. In slightly over two-hour drive from home, we were at an altitude of 6,1,00 meters. For a mid-summer day, the temperature was about 24 C at noon. The air was clean. The horizon was wide and deep.

Idyllwild has not changed much since we first came there about thirty years ago, to spend a couple of weeks taking classes at I.S.O.M.A.T.A . (Idyllwild School of Music and The Arts,) now called Idyllwild Arts. A place that attracted artists and “city refugees,” Idyllwild seemed to send a message of lifestyle simplicity in contact with nature, for a planet that can not sustain the on-going consumeristic alienation of the developed world. In some ways, the Pearlman cabin represented that kind of vision for the future with creative simplicity.

Getting in touch with nature is a good way of going back to fundamentals delivered by boulders and trees: life and death, change, the nature of materials, gravity, light and shadow, adaptation and wise economy of form.

About the Author
Rick / Reuven Meghiddo is an architect and a filmmaker of architecture documentaries. To date, he has produced over ninety architecture documentaries. Many can be seen in www.archidocu.com and www.architectureawareness.com As an architect, he practiced in Israel, California and Italy. Born in Argentina, Rick studied at the Technion and married Ruth Meghiddo, also an architect, in Jerusalem. He has a Master of Architecture from UCLA and a Dottore in Architettura from the University of Rome. He is also a LEED Accredited Professional and is licensed as an Architect and as a Real Estate Broker in California and Israel.
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