Host, KCRW's DnA: Design and Architecture
Since 2002, Frances Anderton has hosted DnA: Design and Architecture, exploring pressing design issues with users, critics and design luminaries. She also assisted with producing KCRW's national and local current affairs shows, To the Point, and Which Way, LA?, hosted by Warren Olney.
In addition, Anderton writes on architecture and design for publications including Dwell Magazine, the New York Times and KCET’s Artbound. Most recently she published Grand Illusion: A Story of Ambition, and its Limits, on LA’s Bunker Hill, based on a studio she co-taught with Frank Gehry at USC School of Architecture, that explored decades of flawed planning efforts on downtown’s Grand Avenue. Other books include L.A. Now, with Thom Mayne, and two books co-written with the late John Chase: Las Vegas: The Success of Excess and Las Vegas: A Guide to Contemporary Architecture.
In 2010 she curated the architecture section of the California Design Biennial, Action/Reaction, at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. When asked what he liked best about the show, the LA Times Magazine’s design critic, Rus Mayer, wrote, “My pick isn't a single thing but a category: architecture. The selections needed to be really good—which they were.”
Frances Anderton has been featured on TV and documentary programs, including, most recently, KCET’s, Global LA about Brits in LA, to coincide with the 2012 Olympics. Prior appearances include KCET’s, Departures series, about architecture in Venice, CA; and the documentary films, Visual Acoustics: The Modernism of Julius Shulman, and A Necessary Ruin: The Story of Buckminster Fuller and the Union Tank Car Dome.
Anderson produced An Icon Is Born for KCRW, about the creation of Walt Disney Concert Hall which won Golden Mike and LA Press Club awards; and United States of Los Angeles, a yearlong series of radio documentaries.
Anderton is a frequent public speaker and writer on architecture and design.
Raised in Bath, an historic spa town in England, she spent a year in Florence, Italy, rehabilitating a casa colonica. She studied architecture at University College London (Bartlett School), and traveled to Jaipur, India, to study the Haveli courtyard house. As associate editor of London-based Architectural Review, her life-changing assignment was to produce a special issue (December, 1987) on emerging new work in Los Angeles.
In 1991, she moved to Los Angeles to become editor-in-chief of LA Architect.
On hearing, Which Way, LA?, she determined to work on that show. She later brought her love of design and architecture to, DnA. She believes her knowledge of politics and current affairs gives her a unique vantage point on architecture and design.