Mid-Century Madness

Palm Springs celebrates 10 years of Modernism Week with parties, music and, of course, swell architecture and design.

For a decade, our favorite desert oasis has gathered experts and enthusiasts on a signature aesthetic that not only makes up much of Palm Springs architectural landscape but captivates new generations of contemporary creators. Modernism Week is also a charitable organization, providing scholarships to local Palm Springs students pursuing college educations in the fields of architecture and design, as well as giving grants to local and state preservation organizations for their efforts to preserve modernist architecture throughout the state of California.

The highly anticipated event will kick off on February 12 with “Throwback Thursday: Celebrating 10 Years of Modernism Week,” a special opening night party observing more than 60 years of mid-century modern style. One of the most in-demand parties of the week, the reception will feature music by Jason Bentley, DJ and music director of KCRW.

Located at MW CAMP (Community and Meeting Place)—Modernism Week’s new festival-inspired central hub on Palm Canyon Drive—the event will highlight the nostalgia of popular Throwback Thursday posts on social media feeds. Attendees are encouraged to party like it’s 1959 … or ’69 … or ’79 … and dress in vintage clothes or as a favorite throwback TV or movie character. Also, be sure to check out Room & Board’s hospitality tent while visiting CAMP.


An additional highlight during Modernism Week’s first weekend is the 15th annual Modernism Show & Sale preview opening night reception on Friday, February 13—an opportunity for collectors and design enthusiasts to gather for an elegant reception and be among the first to see and shop the world-class collection of mid-century furniture, art and objects before it opens to the general public. Includes wine and hors d’oeuvres, live music, valet parking and free daily admission to the Modernism Show & Sale for the rest of the President’s Day holiday weekend.

MODERN JOYS  Top: Checking out a mid-century masterpiece; middle: a guided bus tour through architecturally significant neighborhoods; above left: keynote speaker Todd Oldham; above right: a colorful afternoon at The Saugaro.

Modernism Week proudly welcomes its inaugural keynote speaker, American designer Todd Oldham, who will deliver a visually entertaining talk on the extraordinary career of artist and designer Alexander Girard at 4 p.m. on Saturday, February 14 at the Hilton Palm Springs Resort. The presentation will be followed by an exclusive opportunity for a limited number of attendees to meet Todd Oldham at a poolside cocktail reception at 6 p.m.

All events are open to the public, and tickets are available at modernismweek.com.