In 1971, the noted British architectural historian Reyner Banham wrote his seminal book on the city—Los Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies. In 1972, Banham returned to Los Angeles with a BBC documentary crew to film a homage to the city with which he was so enthralled. Using Baede-Kar—a fictitious audio tour guide—Banham drove across Los Angeles meeting artists, filmmakers, and diner waitresses, enthusiastically extoling the qualities of the sprawling metropolis. In so doing, Banham, the auto-flanuer, part historian and part provocateur, created a new form of critic and an alternative model for studying the city.
During the 2016/17 academic year, the School of Architecture at Woodbury University opens up its Wedge Gallery to explore and document the city. Taking the film Reyner Banham Loves Los Angeles as a point of departure, the Wedge Gallery's cycle Baeda-Kar will reexamine the history and speculate on the future of Los Angeles through a year of exhibitions, talks, and workshops involving students, faculty, and invited contributors.