Gerald Casale of Devo sells Richard Neutra trophy home

Lauren Beale
Hot Property
Devo founder whipped Neutra home into shape and then listed it

Gerald Casale of Devo fame has sold the Kun Residence in Hollywood Hills West for $3.4 million.

Set on a hillside and built in 1936, the restored International-style home was designed by Modernist architect Richard Neutra.

The fortress-like white house has a top-level entry from the street, dining and living rooms, an office, a bonus room, three bedrooms and two bathrooms. There are 1,732 square feet of living space on 3-1/2 stories plus a rooftop deck.

Horizontal bands of windows take in views of the Los Angeles Basin.

Reflecting technological advances at the time it was built, the Kun house was the first home Neutra designed with all-electric fixtures.

The top-floor deck and wraparound decks are intended to blur the line between interior and outdoor spaces -- a signature of Neutra designs. The Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument is considered an important example of the architect’s prewar style.

Colorful plants, a meditation area and bamboo plantings complete the grounds.

Casale, 66, is a founding member of the New Wave band Devo. He co-wrote much of the band’s material, such as the hit song “Whip It.” The singer and bass guitarist turned his own design talents to helping create the band’s energy dome hats and radiation suits. He has scores of television and film soundtrack credits.  

After spending $2 million to buy the house in 2007, it took Casale seven years to whip the home into shape. Work included stripping and staining the wood floors to match their original color, replacing missing metal doors and built-ins and removing any post-1930s materials.

Original and period fixtures were fabricated or found to restore the space. Much of the cabinetry was preserved. Furniture such as the living room sofa and king-sized master bed were made following the original plans. The steel-framed casement windows were restored.

The property came on the market in January at $3.5 million.

Aaron Kirman of Aaroe Estates, the luxury properties division of John Aaroe Group, handled the transaction.

Twitter: @LATHotProperty

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