MODAA was originally developed by SPF:a in 2007, designed to capture the flavor of the city’s 1920s art deco origin without conforming to the historic style. The façade, which has been designated by the City’s Cultural Affairs Commission as “Architecture as Art,” explores the variation, movement, velocity, and tempo of the city on all scales.
As the building is sited exactly on the transition line between The Helms Bakery District and Culver City’s less developed Eastern corridor, MODAA stands as a visual representation of the old and new of Culver City, and provides a gateway to its burgeoning arts and design scene.
Materially, the façade features an arrangement of black and white Nordic Cement Panels that protrude at various depths. On the surface the treatment creates a dynamic visual exchange with the street, but functionally serves as a rain screen, adds insulation, and acts as an acoustic diffuser to Culver City’s main artery.
MODAA’s ground floor currently houses SPF:a’s studio, a global modelling agency, and a 2,200-square-foot art gallery. The second floor houses seven live/work lofts featuring 16-foot ceilings, individual mezzanines, and six-foot-high glass sliding doors on the southern wall; these units are currently used as a co-working space/incubator.