Rethinking Bay Area Modern

Author-historian Alan Hess to share his new research in a lively lecture Nov. 17
Alan Hess

From Market Street in San Francisco to the flatlands of Silicon Valley, the Bay Area is replete with modern high-rises, tract homes, and coffee shops.

No one knows more about them than author, architectural historian, and architect Alan Hess, who will surprise listeners at a lecture on Bay Area modern architecture 6pm Thursday, November 17, at Nob Hill Masonic Center in San Francisco.

“My talk…is going to rethink the conventional narrative about Bay Area Modernism,” says Hess, architecture critic for the San Jose Mercury News.

Hess will focus on the work of once-forgotten architects, like Jack Hillmer, and on “the contributions of our suburban areas,” including ranch houses and shopping centers.

“This comes at a time when some important buildings…are threatened or have been demolished, so it is especially important for the architecture community to take another look at this era,” Hess says.

Nob Hill Masonic Center is located at 1111 California Street, San Francisco. Admission is $8 for members of San Francisco Architectural Heritage, $12 others. Co-sponsored by DOCOMOMO-NOCA. For more info, see

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