Explore the Era

Delve into the postwar Los Angeles art world in this online archive, which provides additional material related to the exhibitions on view at the Getty Center. Learn about hipsters and happenings, and the venues across the city where all the action took place through images from the archives and first-hand accounts with the artists.

From the Archive

Gordon Wagner in his studio

Gordon Wagner in his studio, ca. 1964–66. Photo by and © Harry Drinkwater

Gordon Wagner lived and worked in Topanga Canyon—located in the Santa Monica Mountains, north of Santa Monica—where he constructed his assemblages from a variety of found objects. He would travel into Los Angeles to look for materials as well as visit arts happenings like the 1955 exhibition, Action, in the merry-go-round building on the Santa Monica pier.

Historic Map Locations

Works of Art

  • The Mexican Night Clerk

    The Mexican Night Clerk, 1960–65, Gordon Wagner. Mixed media, 81 15/16 x 34 x 4 3/4 in. Tobey C. Moss Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. © Estate of Gordon Wagner