Some six months ago Richard Melville Hall aka Moby, a musician that needs no special introduction, started a photo blog about, as he says, “of the random and strange and banal and beautiful architecture I see in Los Angeles.”
After relocating in 2010 from New York to Los Angeles, Moby was stunned by the diversity of architectural expression as well as bizarre architectural and spatial solutions of his newfound home. He decided to document his admiration on a blog. Thus, he states in one of his first posts: “One of the things that fascinates and baffles me about Los Angeles is the randomness and accidental beauty and strangeness of the architecture here. Every day I arbitrarily see buildings and houses and odd structures that go from the beautiful to the banal, usually within 10 feet of each other. So, to that end I’m starting a self-indulgent and fun but pointless new project: Moby Los Angeles Architecture.”
The blog contains unpretentious, mostly black and white photos peppered with short and sweet anecdotes. Most of the photos are characterized by an absence of people, what makes them somewhat ghoulish, while the architecture in the photos doesn’t look inhabited but like an abandoned film noir set. Moby not only documents architecture, but the absence of it as well, or meaningless architecture according to him.
The texts, devoid of any punctuation marks, are written as a stream of consciousness narrative and carry a whiff of subtle humor about them. Moby is disarming in his humility towards his readers for bothering them with his thoughts, all the while not shying away from showing his ignorance, for example in his recent post: “Today, two houses. I know nothing about either house, apart from the fact that one is older and the other is brand new.”
Moby’s blog portrays a whole different aspect of Los Angeles, as viewed through the lenses of a non-photographer and non-architect. Moby himself holds that precisely the fact that he’s an amateur in both fields of photography and architecture enables him certain liberties and makes room for mistakes as there isn’t the pressure to “do everything right,” and his byline says it all – “moby the dilettante architecture photographer.”
Moby even went a step farther and dared to say that he “loves architecture because it’s not his job,” as opposed to his friends architects who all suffer from “burn-out.”
“The 1883 Magazine” recently published a short interview with this versatile musician where he talks about his motivation for writing a blog, but also shows incredible enthusiasm for knowing and understanding spatial elements within his surroundings. What else is there left to say, except: “Moby, you are made of stars!”
Click here to follow Moby’s architectural reports.