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Conversation@PAM: Exploring Late Modernism Through the Lens of Wayne Thom

Published on Nov 29, 2022

Renowned architectural C will be at the USC Pacific Asia Museum on Thursday, Dec. 1, to share recollections of his illustrious career spanning over 50 years. 

“Conversation@PAM: Exploring Late Modernism Through the Lens of Wayne Thom” will be moderated by Dr. Emily Bills, guest curator of the exhibition “After Modernism: Through the Lens of Wayne Thom” and author of the book “Wayne Thom: Photographing the Late Modern.” 

Thom was born in Shanghai and grew up in Hong Kong before moving to Vancouver. He studied photography, first at ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena, and then at Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, where he graduated in 1968. 

His career spans five decades documenting upward of 2,800 projects. He has worked with clients in North America and Asia, but based mainly in the Greater Los Angeles area. His clients include architects and developers such as I.M. Pei, Quincy Jones, Arthur Erickson, Bennie Gonzales, William Pereira, Bing Thom, John Portman, Gio Ponti, Kajima USA, NBBJ and SOM. 

Dr. Bills is an educator, curator, and author with research interests in urban history and social and environmental justice. She is Participating Adjunct Professor and Coordinator of the Urban Studies Program at Woodbury University. Professor Bills received her Ph.D. in the history of architecture and urbanism from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Smithsonian Institution Archives of American Art. 

Together, Thom and Bills will discuss Thom’s early beginnings and stories of how he captured the spectacular skyscrapers of downtown Los Angeles. 

Signed copies of the book “Wayne Thom: Photographing the Late Modern” will be available for sale at the USC PAM store following the program. To reserve your book now, email Cristina Hernandez-Guerrero at 

Capacity is limited and protocols will be implemented for the health and safety of all guests and staff. 

This program is free but reservations are required.

To register, visit

For more information, call (626) 449-2742.

USC PAM is at 46 N. Los Robles Ave. in Pasadena. 

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