Chapter 1 of 24
Left: Michael Rotondi. Right: Clark Stevens
I am Michael Rotondi. I'm an architect and an educator, working in Los Angeles. My entire frame of reference as a practising architect has been guided over the last 24 years because I've been in a way that comes out of seeing architectural practice as both educating as well as building. The entire practice is incorporated. incorporates my teaching practice at Southern California Institute of Architecture and my current ﬁrm's work at RoTo, Architects. 2 The activities break down'into three areas: teaching. learning and building. "I don't separate my work as an educator from my work as a builder, a practising architect My history is I'm ﬁrst generation American. My father emigrated from the old country, from Italy, and came to Los Angeles the ﬁrst time in 1927 when it was still semi-rural, just beginning to be urbanised. He said that out here you could truly build your dream. Whatever you imagined was possible. was'possible but here. He said also he felt when he ﬁrst arrived out here. that Europe, the umbilical from Europe. never made it over the Rocky Mountains and so it was a clean slate and We can invent a life out here. He made clearzt‘o me how connected I am to this place, and how my whole outlook and my mode of working really comes from the profound belief that anything imaginable is possible.