You could say Charles Ray is having a moment. After going a significant period of time without a major show, the L.A.-based contemporary artist — who’s been called “America’s profoundest and most challenging sculptor, as well as its slowest” — has presented four rare exhibitions this year at some of the world’s most prestigious museums, and he also completed a major commission for the Whitney Biennial.
In his spare time, Ray has also acquired a real estate masterpiece, doling out a little more than $4.4 million for a striking modernist residence in Brentwood’s bucolic Mandeville Canyon area.
Hewn almost entirely from glass and steel — and reportedly patterned after Case Study houses designed by Craig Ellwood and Pierre Koenig — the two-story structure was built in 1960 by midcentury architect Bernard Zimmerman for celebrity clothier Leland Zeidler and his wife Marian, and is aptly known as the “Zeidler Residence.”
Hidden behind a lengthy gated driveway, on a steeply sloped 3.4-acre parcel bordering the Westridge-Canyonback Wilderness Park, the home’s exterior is marked by a series of vertical supports and cantilevered decks overlooking mountain and treetop views. Inside, four bedrooms and five baths are filtered across 4,400 square feet of minimalist living space adorned throughout with hardwood floors, a double-sided fireplace and floor-to-ceiling walls of glass.
A floating staircase passes through an outdoor terrace before emptying out at an orange-hued double front door, which opens into an entry foyer surrounded by beveled-glass walls. From there, a sky-lit stairwell heads up to the main living quarters, where highlights include a sunken living room with glass sliders flowing out to the backyard on one side and a dining area on the other.
Elsewhere is a family room, den, spacious kitchen, and fireside primary suite equipped with a generous-size closet and bath. Outdoors, the walled backyard is spotlighted by an al fresco entertaining terrace abutting a slender pool; and the property also hosts a guest apartment atop the detached two-car garage.