Louis Armet and Eldon Davis began their partnership in the 1940’s, along with their 2nd generation Modernist counterparts John Lautner, Philip Koenig and other members of the Case Study House program. Their perspective was more aligned with the warmth and comfort of Frank Lloyd Wright, rather than the severe abstraction of more radical modern design. They became well known for their design for religious institutions in the 50’s, and continued to produce design and renovation in this arena throughout their career. In the early 60’s Armet and Davis collaborated with fellow architects Lundberg, and later Victor Newlove, who became a partner in the firm. The homes designed in these years reflected the influence of Wright, yet are quintessential mid-century Hollywood. Walking through their homes, you can almost see the hairdos and hear the tinkling glasses of the swinging 60’s set.
Armet and Davis are most recognized for their contribution to Googie architecture, pioneered by John Lautner’s design for a popular LA coffee shop. While Lautner tried to distance himself from the notoriety and criticism of Googie Style, Armet and Davis embraced the trend and took it to a higher level. While they were labeled as trivial and extreme by critics of the time, they set the tone for an emerging car culture, capturing drivers attention with soaring angled roof lines, space age details, and wide open windows with panoramic views of traffic passing by. While modern and space age in theme, they incorporated the warmth of Wright’s inspiration in their color schemes and revolutionary open kitchens and counters. Their acclaim for these designs has grown recently, and has become a passion for preservationists. While many have since been demolished, many remain as shining examples of this genre, such as Norm’s and Pann’s.