Literature and I have been having a love affair for quite some time. First, he and I dated. And now, I’m certain this thing we have going on is for life. Any chance I get to be around him and his cohorts, I’m there. Imagine my surprise when I found the perfect bookstore within walking distance from my abode. I’m not being dramatic and I most certainly am a gal who uses the word “perfect” sparingly. Again, I say, this establishment – Hennessey + Ingalls – is perfect. No matter your passion [or obsession] there is a book to feed your hunger. Art, architecture, fashion, design, film, travel…the possibilites are endless. Hennessey + Ingalls cultivates passion and trains the eye, with a humility and sense of comfort that makes you want to stay for hours on end. When in Los Angeles, I strongly recommend visiting either location. Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing Brett Hennessey, member of the founding family, on the history, aesthetic and curation of this jem of the city.
What inspired the establishment of Hennessey + Ingalls?
The bookstore was established in 1962 as a way for Reginald Hennessey (founder) to sell off his personal collection of books.
How do you decide which publications and literature become part of your carefully curated selection?
Since we are a specialty store dealing solely in the visual arts that helps narrow down the book buying, but what it truly comes down to is over 50 years of expertise in knowing our customers / clients.
How would you describe the aesthetic of your bookstore?
Our stores are custom-built by local architects and the quality of the store itself is just as amazing as the books inside.
What genres of literature and publications can a perspective customer expect to find when visiting?
We carry new, used, rare and out-of-print books in art, architecture, photography, graphic design, interior design, fashion, landscape and gardening.
Who is the Hennessey + Ingalls customer?
We are pleased to count many of the area’s and the country’s leading architectural firms as our clients, along with museums, collectors, art galleries, students, interior designers, graphic design firms, and schools. We are the primary book supplier to three large academic art libraries in Southern California, as well as to smaller schools and corporate libraries around the country. The broadness of our collections and the knowledge of our staff have Hennessey + Ingalls an important stop for art directors in film, television, and advertising.
What do you want individuals to gain from visiting your establishment? And, what would you like for your legacy to be in the minds of those who experience Hennessey + Ingalls?
Since local independent brick and mortar bookstores are few and far between these days, Hennessey + Ingalls prides itself on great customer service and products. With our flagship Santa Monica store being over 8,000 square feet of specialty design books I would expect that most customers have never seen such a vast collection. We want everyone who visits our store to have an amazing experience that will leave them wanting to come back for more.
Santa Monica Location
214 Wilshire Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA
Space 15 Twenty – 1520 North Cahuenga Boulevard #8
Los Angeles, CA