Today the Venice Paparazzi spotlight shines on Architect, Inventor and Educator David Hertz.

How many years in Venice?  My great grandmother lived in Venice since the 20’s, at 21 Ozone.  I have been visiting her since 1960, I have lived in Venice full time since 1976.

Tell us about your art/medium:  Architect/artist using appropriation and found objects within the landscape on a large scale.

How many years, and how did you get into it?  Trained as an Architect at Sci-Arc, worked with Frank Gehry in the Venice studio in the early 80’s and worked with most of the local Venice artists.

What projects are you currently working on?  

  • Launch Control facility for Space X at Cape Canaveral for Elon Musk and other projects.
  • Making water from air using solar energy and giving it away for free to communities and those in need.
  • Recently completed the restaurant Felix on Abbot Kinney  and working on the mixed use hotel project The Venice Place.
  • I am designing a new museum for the VHF Venice Heritage Foundation at Centennial Park.
  • Also recently completed the design of the WSL World Surfing League perpetual trophy.

Photo taken at the 2017 Green Venice Festival

Where do you find inspiration/favorite artists?  Earth Artist, Heizer, Smithson, and large scale sculpture like Serra.

What advice would you give someone starting out in your field?  You better love what you do.

Favorite affirmation, mantra, or quote:  “We work in the dark- we do what we can- we give what we have. Our doubt is our passion and our passion is our task. The rest is the madness of art.

747 Wing House

What accomplishments, projects, or pieces that you are most proud of?   747 Wing House.  This project exists on a 55-acre property in the remote hills of Malibu with unique topography and panoramic views looking out to a nearby mountain range, a valley, and the Pacific Ocean with islands in the distance. In searching for inspiration, I imagined a roof structure that would allow for a un-obstructed view of the mountain range and distant views.  Click here to read more!

Interested in checking out 747 Wing House?    Get your tickets now for thVenice Design Series’ Art and Architecture Tour.  This event benefits Venice Community Housing.  

Past art projects, any pieces shown in Venice:  Californication House on Market Street.  

Californication House

What causes do you support?  

  • Venice Community Housing’s Venice Design Series. 
  • Venice Family Clinic- Participant artist since 1984.
  • Presently on curatorial committee for Venice Art Walk.
  • Venice Community Healing Gardens
  • Venice Teen Project
  • VHF Venice Heritage Foundation
  • Heal The Bay Board member

What’s one thing we can do to make the world a better place?  Don’t eat animals, use plastic or drive.

What’s on your bucket list:   Travel the world, enjoy more time in Venice not only as a place for work.

© Laura Doss-Hertz


Describe Venice. Gritty, urbane, suburban, creative, eclectic, diverse, lacks homogeneity, sunsets, where the city meets the sea.

Describe your perfect day in Venice:    It would start with a ride to the beach for a sunrise surf at the Breakwater, on a good swell, without a crowd, in the summer.  Then walk to the studio, take a break for a lunchtime stroll on the boardwalk, and then have an evening session  glass off, followed by a ride to dinner with friends during a beautiful sunset.  Finish it off with a ride home under the stars on a warm summer night.

David with his beautiful wife Laura Doss Hertz. Photo credit Shane F. King.

What Venice places would you take a visiting artist friend?  

List any of your favorite Venice event(s).  Venice Art Walk,  Venice Art and Architecture, and Venice Design Series.

David leading a Venice Art Walk Architecture Bike Tour

What is your craziest or fondest Venice experience?  

  • 60’s: Going to the closing day on my birthday of POP. 
  • 70’s: Surfing POP
  • 80’s: Going to pop up art shows in the closed and decrepit POP
  • 90’s: Working with Jean Michel Basquiat on Market Street.

Here is David on the ground for a bike stunt in 1972.  Wow!

David’s studio on Market street in still from Orson Wells 1958 Touch Of Evil

Anything else about Venice that you would like to say?  The only constant in Venice, is change.

Anything else you want to share about yourself to the world?  

  • Art is long, life is short!

David at his Skywell” on Horizon court where he makes water from air using solar energy and gives it away to the community.

View video Precipitating Change!   

About:  Architect, David Hertz, has integrated an air to water technology called “Skysource” to produce up to 150 gallons of water per day. The water is then offered to the public of Venice Beach, CA for free, as well as to a local NGO, Community Healing Gardens.



Check out The Restorative Home: Ecological Houses.   

This monograph represents over a dozen houses selected from the last 30 years from one of the pioneers in sustainable architecture. With a forward by Michael Webb, this large landscape formatted book is beautifully laid out with striking photographs depicting not only the finished works, but some showing the unique construction process as well. Each residence has a detailed project description and select drawings that explain the design process and how modern materials can be exploited to create self–sustaining homes, which work to restore not just the environment around them, but the people who call them home.   Available on Amazon.

Who should Venice Paparazzi cast the spotlight on next?  All people from Venice that are interesting regardless of how long they have lived here.


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