After careful renovation, Thomas Mann House was inaugurated in Los Angeles on June 18, 2018 as the new residence of the Federal Republic of Germany for intellectuals from culture, politics, business, media and science by Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Occhio contributes, along with other major German companies, to the interior of the villa and stands for the epitome of German creative work.
Thomas Mann and his family lived in L.A. for ten years. The house on San Remo Drive, designed by the German architect Julius Ralph Davidson, became an important meeting place for artists and intellectuals in these years – from philosophers like Theodor Adorno and Albert Einstein to Berthold Brecht.
»We are very proud to contribute to this culturally significant project,« said Axel Meise, owner and designer of Occhio.
Acquired in 2016 by the Federal Republic of Germany, the scholarship program of Villa Aurora & Thomas Mann House e. V. for intellectuals from culture, politics, economics, media and science will now take place here. For this purpose, the house, built in 1942, was initially restored to its original state as part of renovation work.
Under the planning and management of the LenzWerk Holding from Berlin, some of the most respected representatives of contemporary German interior design worked on the interior of the property – financed by the Berthold Leibinger Stiftung. What remains is the open mind of the house. At the same time, Thomas Mann's furnishings are not to be restored, but his essence shall be transferred to the present. The newly inaugurated Thomas Mann House thus reflects the historical and contemporary significance of the house as a cultural location of the Federal Republic in today's America.
»At Occhio, we think in holistic systems and always have the user in mind. Form follows function – a guiding principle that already shaped design in the past. Our luminaires stand for highest quality and longevity, in terms of workmanship, design – and light quality. In the Thomas Mann House, these values of Occhio are appreciated highly and represent the potential of German creative work. The interplay of timeless design and traditional surfaces harmonises past and present«, says Axel Meise.
The Thomas Mann House in Los Angeles is not only a place for cultural practice, but also an example of contemporary design.