Thursday, December 22, 2011

California Design (Pacific Standard Time #6)

Another perfect day in the City of Angels.  This time of year, it's a definite problem just driving down the street with crazed last-minute shoppers and other people who need to be somewhere yesterday.  So LACMA is probably the least crowded of all LA institutions today where those who finished their Christmas shopping early soaked in this perfect winter day in Southern California.  This is my 6th Pacific Standard Time tour stop where California design in being showcased in the Resnick Pavilion at LACMA.  This one did not disappoint and to my surprise, photography was allowed throughout the exhibit with the exception of the re-creation of the Eames House living room.  So of course, I snapped away starting with what greets visitors (top) as well as what brought up the rear (bottom).  And in between, was a visual buffet of what California design was all about.  As I snaked my way through various items, I cannot help but think that this kind of design, especially the architecture, could never have originated in the east coast.  Bright, open, clean, optimistic.  The fact that it was sunny outside and in the 60s in December has everything to do the design attributes of everything that originates from California.  Artists and designers are definitely influenced by the geography and the climate of where they do their creative work.  It may be winter solstice in the northern hemisphere but if you're here, there is good reason to be out visiting a place like LACMA.  It's also the first day of my winter vacation and after working hard most of the year, I needed a day like today.

The red item above is called an Ice Gun, c. 1935.  The description reads "The ice gun's aerodynamic form resembles the streamlined trains and automobiles of the 1930s.  It provided cocktail party theater:  the thirsty gunslinger would pull back on the cone-shaped lever, drop the ice cubes in the opening at the top, release the trigger, and crushed ice would fall into the waiting glass."  Now, that is cool.

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