Kyle McGuire, San Francisco, CA
House at 1329 Carroll Ave., Los Angeles used in the filming of the “Charmed" tv show
House of the Seven Gables, Salem Massachusetts
Mourning Dress Textile by James McCreary and Co., N.Y. American 1876–78, Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Ghost in the Stereoscope Publisher London Stereoscopic Company British Unknown ca. 1856 Metropolitan Museum of Art
Kyle McGuire will take us on an illustrated journey showing how different architectural and interior styles have been used in novels, films, and tv shows to communicate personality and plot across a variety of different genres.
Starting in the 18th century — but fully blossoming during the Romantic period in the middle of the 19th century — architecture and interiors increasingly began to be treated as characters in their own right alongside humans, ghosts, witches, vampires, and other supernaturals in gothic novels. We will see how different styles from the crenellated castle to the Victorian mansion have been used in changing ways over time to evoke enchantment, haunting, suspense, and horror.
We’ll investigate how these themes evolved with the introduction of visual, non-verbal storytelling in cinema and television. The talk will cover several classic 20th century and 21st century films with detailed examinations of how characters’ personalities and their homes (or lairs!) are intertwined.
We’ll also go behind the scenes to examine the real historic cultural trends, plus the artifacts and decorative arts that accompanied them that fueled these supernatural pop culture tropes.
You will leave this program with much to reflect on about what Hollywood thinks your home has to say about you — that is, if you have a reflection!
Kyle McGuire is an avid collector and researcher of 19th century design and architecture. He studied Graphic Design and received a BFA at the California College of the Art (formerly California College of Arts and Crafts). He currently works in the technology industry as a principal product designer for a large cybersecurity company. He has served on the Forum board since 2013 and served on the board of the Victorian Alliance of San Franciso for over a decade. In his free time he is working on the restoration of a 1891 Italianate flat near Alamo Square and building up his archive of 19th century design books and collection of decorative arts objects.