Just Above Sunset
July 2, 2006 - The Heat

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Hollywood was miserable Monday, June 26, 2006 - dark all day and in the nineties, with the feel of thunderstorms nearby, but they never came - just distant rumbles now and then. The sky turned an odd sick yellow in the late morning and the air was throbbing - time to unplug a few things before the electrical storm. But that passed and the whole basin reverted to a dark and steamy calm. This is not how it's supposed to be out here at the edge of the Mojave, with the mild Pacific just down the road.

This is hard to capture in a photo. At LACMA (the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, down on Wilshire) there's a new David Hockney exhibit - portraits this time. The man is famous for his swimming pools.


From the LA City Beat review -


The prolific Hockney has by far a more widely disseminated body of work than any current L.A.-identified artist. Ed Ruscha's output, much more subtle and ironic, is a distant second in this regard. Hockney's swimming-pool paintings in sun-bleached pastels (like "A Bigger Splash" and "Pool with Two Figures") have come to define a kind of sequestered gay Southern California privilege. The later long rectangles of various local canyons received wide public display as well. Winding roads and sprawling flora in neo-Fauve colors became emblematic - for better or worse - of a chamber-of-commerce veneer that is, in reality, a precious commodity. Hockney may make sharp observations about L.A., but he's never been one to lacerate the city's most vulnerable foibles.


But if Hockney were to paint a Hollywood Hills pool on a day like this, it would look like this, outside the window here. Printed as a negative, this is how it felt here.

Hot pool in Hollywood -

A wall baking in Culver City, three days later -

Hot wall in Culver City -

A hot stairway nearby, at the Culver Hotel -

Hot window,,,

And dappled shade in an old building being restored down that way -

... dappled shade ...


If you use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me

These were shot with a Nikon D70 - using lens (1) AF-S Nikkor 18-70 mm 1:35-4.5G ED, or (2) AF Nikkor 70-300mm telephoto, or after 5 June 2006, (3) AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor, 55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED. They were modified for web posting using Adobe Photoshop 7.0

The original large-format raw files are available upon request.

Copyright 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik

The inclusion of any text from others is quotation for the purpose of illustration and commentary, as permitted by the fair use doctrine of U.S. copyright law.  See the Legal Notice Regarding Fair Use for the relevant citation.
Timestamp for this version of this issue below (Pacific Time) -

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