I’m always learning something new about the incredible architectural history in Silver Lake. I had no idea, for example, that Anaïs Nin lived right on Hildalgo Avenue from 1962 until 1977, when she passed away at age 73. Nin was best known for her many published journals, spanning more than 60 years, including Henry and June about her relationship with writer Henry Miller.
Nin lived in Silver Lake with her husband Rupert Pole (she was also married to her first husband at the time) in a home designed by Pole’s half-brother Eric Lloyd Wright, architect and grandson of Frank Lloyd Wright. The home was Wright’s first solo project, completed in 1962 for $22,000.
In 2006, Wright told Los Angeles Times, “My brother and Anaïs were very much involved in designing this house, from the preliminary plans to the working drawings to getting the contractor. I met with them and heard what their dreams were. Rupert felt that she should have a sense of security, a place that was permanent. I got to know them better by doing their house.”
Wright designed the 1,400-square-foot, one-bedroom house with the couple’s requests in mind. From the living room and patio, Nin and Pole wanted views of the pool, the Silver Lake Reservoir, and the sunset. To capture these views, the living room and dining areas have long walls of windows and sliding glass doors.
In her sixth volume of Diary, Nin wrote about her life and home in Los Angeles, describing her Silver Lake home as “one large studio, no separate, small partitions.
“It had the sense of space of Japanese houses; it had the vista of a Japanese screen, all sky, mountains, lake, as if one lived out of doors,” Nin wrote. “Yet the roof, held by its heavy beams, gave a feeling of protection while the big windows which separated the roof from the studio framed the flight of birds, the sailing of clouds.”