McCoy was originally a fiction writer, also working as a researcher for Theodore Dreiser, but she turned to architectural writing after working as a draftsman for Rudolf Schindler and learning about Southern California Modern architecture.
Her book Five California Architects, written about Bernard Maybeck, Irving Gill, Charles and Henry Greene, and Rudolf Schindler, was the first work to bring the California Modernism movement to the attention of a large audience.
McCoy contributed to John Entenza's Art & Architecture, as well as Architectural Forum and Architectural Record and also wrote Blueprints for Modern Living, a history of the Case Study homes.
From grahamfoundation.org, latimes.com and kcet.org
|Cover of Five California Architects|
|Esther McCoy's home in Ocean Park, California|
|Julius Shulman photo of Esther McCoy|
|Esther McCoy in Mexico, 1952|