L.A. Chicana/Chicano Murals under Siege

UPCOMING EXHIBITIONS

Anton Wagner, Looking North from City Hall Tower, 1933
Anton Wagner, Looking North from City Hall Tower, 1933
Los Angeles: 1932–33 by Anton Wagner, PC 17, California Historical Society
October 13, 2018 – March 10, 2019
Boomtowns: How Photography Shaped Los Angeles and San Francisco, Selections from the California Historical Society Collection

Boomtowns: How Photography Shaped Los Angeles and San Francisco, Selections from the California Historical Society Collection considers the first one hundred years of photography in what would become California’s two most prominent cities. As San Francisco and Los Angeles entered a period of rapid, unimaginable growth following the state’s entry into the Union in 1850, photography played a significant role in defining and shaping how the rest of the country understood California. Photographers also captured and responded to the distinctly different topography and development patterns of the two cities. The exhibition features works by both anonymous photographers and well-known artists—such as Carleton Watkins, Eadweard Muybridge, Minor White, Laura Adams Armer, and Arnold Genthe—and includes photographs made for a broad range of purposes, from civic boosterism and real estate development, to industry and art.

The earliest work is a rare 1851 daguerreotype panorama picturing San Francisco's shoreline that made visible all the opportunities and natural resources that the push westward promised. Among the later selections is a group of photographs taken by German geographer Anton Wagner who traversed Depression-era Los Angeles on foot as he researched his 1935 book—the first study of the sprawling metropolis—in which he marveled that the city appeared to have "no beginning nor end." From pictures of San Francisco on fire following the 1906 earthquake, to photographs taken in the 1920s of the nascent Hollywoodland housing development—which bequeathed the city its iconic sign—this exhibition draws exclusively from CHS’s extensive photographic holdings.

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