James Goldstein is a trailer park mogul perhaps most widely known for dressing like Dr. Teeth from the Muppets and sitting front row at Lakers games, but he's also one of Los Angeles's most singular architectural stewards, having lived and cared for and expanded one of the city's most spectacular (and dangerous) houses: the Sheats-Goldstein House on a hillside in Beverly Crest, by John Lautner, first built for a family in 1963.
In 2013, artist Xavier Veilhan installed a group of site-specific works in the Sheats-Goldstein, including a life-saved Lautner sculpture. Earlier this month, at a MOCA/Commonwealth Projects party for Veilhan's book about that and others in his series of architecture installations (Architectones: Art In the Living Environment), the artist spoke with Goldstein about his long relationship with the house.
Goldstein bought the Sheats-Goldstein in 1972 and began a major renovation in 1980 with Lautner's assistance. After Lautner's death in 1994, he worked with Duncan Nicholson on even more spectacular additions. (The Sheats-Goldstein has appeared in many movies over the years, perhaps most famously as pornographer Jackie Treehorn's house in The Big Lebowski; it has also hosted an actual porn shoot.)
In his conversation with Veilhan, Goldstein spoke about wanting to find a house suitable for his beloved Afghan hound (this is cut off at the beginning of our video), tearing down the adjacent Concannon Residence, also designed by Lautner, and adding the infinity tennis court and a baller club complex. The video is terrible here, but the sound is aces, so you can at least hear everything Goldstein has to say:
And here's what Veilhan drew as Goldstein spoke:
· Inside John Lautner's Dangerous Sheats-Goldstein House [Curbed LA]
· Life-Sized John Lautner Sculpture Hangs Out at His Sheats-Goldstein House in Beverly Crest [Curbed LA]
· The Lautner House Torn Down to Expand a Lautner House [Curbed LA]
· Sheats-Goldstein House [Curbed LA]