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Friday, August 15, 2014

Vincent R. Bonini

Vincent R. Bonini (1918-1998) graduated from UCLA in 1937. During World War II he was stationed in Chicago and became fascinated with architecture. He wrote to Frank Lloyd Wright, who replied that as soon as Bonini finished his military service, he could join the Taliesin Fellowship.

In 1946, Bonini went to Taliesin East and later on to Taliesin West. While there, he formed lasting friendships
with many other fellows, including Paolo Soleri and Fred and Marianne Liebhardt.

Bonini drafted for Harwell Hamilton Harris then worked for three years with Smith & Williams. For a short time, he worked with Floats, Inc., and while he did not design any of their Rose Bowl floats, he designed the Monsanto House's interior remodel for Floats, Inc., as well as the company's conference room. He also designed homes for the company's owners, Robert Henry and Roger Tierney, in addition to a number of other private residences.

While working on his own residence, Bonini became friends with Eugene Weston III, an architect who had built a number of contemporary homes, some of which were being photographed by Julius Shulman. Bonini and his wife borrowed patio furniture designed by Weston for a photo shoot with Shulman which eventually was published in the Los Angeles Examiner.

The Boninis moved to La Jolla, California, at which time he went to work for the firm of Liebhardt & Weston. Afterwards he was hired by the University of California San Diego's architectural and engineering department, where he remained for the rest of his career. His greatest contributions through UCSD were his work on the Scripps Memorial Hospital and UCSD Medical Center.

All images from

Thornton residence, La Cañada

Allen residence, La Cañada

Henry residence, Flintridge

St. Julian residence, La Cañada

Bonini residence #1,  La Cañada

Interior of Bonini residence #1, La Cañada

Bonini residence #2, La Cañada

Interior of Bonini residence #2, La Cañada


  1. Just fabulous! I was definitely born in the wrong era. ;)

    1. Me too! That first Bonini residence or the Henry residence would be paradise for me.