This 594-Square-Foot Apartment in Silver Lake Is a Modernist

Not much more than 600 square feet, the apartment is housed in a 16-unit complex from the 1920s that has a semi-commune feeling with its interconnected living spaces and garden walkways. As each apartment was given its own identity, Fanny has loved figuring out how to live in this vision. “There is a vast array of different apartments in the building,” she says. “The one across the way is a double-height apartment with an incredible wall of windows. Mine is oriented toward the Hollywood sign—a perfect painting studio.”

The huge windows and incredible view are a highlight of the apartment. “The light is always doing something different,” Fanny says. “I feel like there is never the same light.”

Jenna Ohnemus Peffley

Even though Schindler was an iconic L.A. architect, Fanny thinks the space doesn’t have a particularly local feeling. “The shapes are very Russian Constructivism.” This idea rings true in the wood features, the fireplace, and the shape of the ceiling. “Schindler was very specific with his work. He designed with an idea of exactly how people should live,” Fanny says. “I haven’t become one of those people who are totally obsessed with Schindler, but he becomes part of your psyche.”

“I love having Marcel Duchamp like a guardian of sorts, looking down at my pantry,” says Fanny, who wrote her thesis on artist Richard Hamilton, a Duchamp obsessive. “It’s a tether to this academic life. A funny sort of specter in my life.”

Jenna Ohnemus Peffley

The one challenge of the space is the kitchen, which is tucked away and almost comically small. When Fanny was first living in the apartment, she kept setting off the fire alarm. “I finally figured out how to open the little kitchen window and, once it’s open, it is miraculous,” she says. “This completely obliterated the problem. Schindler thought about it and has these sophisticated engineering innovations.”

“I call it the jewel box because of the feel. It’s very lapidary because of the tile,” Fanny says.

Jenna Ohnemus Peffley