Backyard Oasis: The Swimming Pool in Southern California Photography, 1945 - 1982


On January 21, 2012, Palm Springs Art Museum will be hosting Backyard Oasis as part of Pacific Standard Time exhibitions. It features a collection of photographs of swimming pools in Southern California, capturing it’s different roles in different cultures. Read on…

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The photographs were from 1945 to 1982 and the exhibition examines the symbolism of the swimming pools in California’s culture and identity. According to Backyard Oasis examines swimming pools in photographs as visual analogs of the ideals and expectations associated with Southern California. These images of individual water-based environs in the arid landscape are an integral part of the region’s identity, a microcosm of the hopes and disillusionments of the country’s post-World War II ethos. As a private setting, the backyard pool became a stage for sub-culture rituals and clandestine desires.

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Some of the featured photos are of Tony Alva, shot by Craig Stecyk – one of skateboarding’s cultural icons and historians and also members of Dogtown’s Z-Boys. Other photos are by Michael Childers, John Baldessari, Jane O’Neal, Julius Shulman, Bill Anderson, Leland Lee, Bob Mizer, Maynard Parker, Loretta Ayeroff, Maynard Parker, and Ed Ruscha.

The exhibition will run from January 21 – May 27, 2012 – Be sure to check this out if you’re around the area. For more information, you may visit or

written by nyebe on 2011-12-29 #news #california #analogue #swimming-pool #photography #so-cal #news #southern-california #exhibitions #backyard-oasis #palm-springs-art-museum

One Comment

  1. neanderthalis
    neanderthalis ·

    Amazing photographs. I love the colors captured. :D

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