Richard Joseph Neutra, (born April 8, 1892, Vienna, Austria—died April 16, 1970, Wuppertal, W.Ger.), Austrian-born American architect known for his role in introducing the International Style into American architecture.
Neutra studied under Adolf Loos at the Vienna University of Technology. He was a student of Max Fabiani and Karl Mayreder. In 1912 he undertook a study trip to Italy and Balkans with Ernst Ludwig Freud (son of Sigmund Freud).
Neutra’s most important early work was the Lovell House, Los Angeles (1927–29), which has glass expanses and cable-suspended balconies and is stylistically similar to the work of Le Corbusier and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in Europe. Throughout the 1930s he designed houses in the International Style.
Shortly after World War II, Neutra created his most memorable works: the Kaufmann Desert House, Palm Springs, Calif. (1946–47), and the Tremaine House, Santa Barbara, Calif. (1947–48). Elegant and precise, these houses are considered exceptionally fine examples of the International Style.
Carefully placed in the landscape, Neutra’s houses often have patios or porches that make the outdoors seem part of the house. He believed that architecture should be a means of bringing man back into harmony with nature and with himself and was particularly concerned that his houses reflect the way of life of the owner.
He was famous for the attention he gave to defining the real needs of his clients, regardless of the size of the project, in contrast to other architects eager to impose their artistic vision on a client. Neutra sometimes used detailed questionnaires to discover his client’s needs, much to their surprise. His domestic architecture was a blend of art, landscape, and practical comfort.
images source: http://www.archdaily.com/29457/julius-schulman-1910-2009
Neutra’s early watercolors and drawings, most of them of places he traveled (particularly his trips to the Balkans in WWI) and portrait sketches, showed influence from artists such as Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele etc. Neutra’s sister Josefine, who could draw, is cited as developing Neutra’s inclination towards drawing.