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Eclectic midcentury once part of architectural commune up for grabs in Laurel Canyon

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The 1.36-acre property is asking $2.7M

Photos by Erik Grammer, courtesy of Rob Kallick

Between its hunting cabins, speakeasies, secret military film studios, rock star party pads, celebrity compounds, and modernist masterpieces, Laurel Canyon’s real estate market may well boast the highest ratio of interesting backstories per square foot of any neighborhood in Los Angeles. Here to bolster that rep is a new listing located on Crescent Drive a little south and east of Wonderland Avenue.

Erected circa 1952, the home was part of an architectural commune founded by Gene Loose, Jr., an instructor at the Chouinard Art Institute of Los Angeles, and seven of his students.

As reported in a 1950 Los Angeles Times feature on the noteworthy collaboration, the students, all World War II vets, and their instructor were decidedly unimpressed with the mass-produced housing options being offered to them following the war, and decided to put their training to practical use in building their own.

The Chouinard group incorporated to collectively purchase a 17.5-acre lot on Lookout Mountain, which was then subdivided between them. Each member built as much of his own home as possible, and enlisted the assistance of the others to pitch in when needed.

According to marketing materials, this particular residence was built by and for Chouinard student Lewis Ives.

Originally a two-bedroom, two-bath measuring 1,604 square feet, it’s been significantly expanded and altered over the years and now contains four bedrooms and three bathrooms within 2,984 square feet of floor space, including a separate guest unit.

On a secluded 1.36-acre lot with a kidney-shaped pool, picturesque views, and trees galore, the property is asking $2.685 million.