Time Travel Back to 1970s L.A. with These Vintage Photos

The images appear in a new show at Joseph Bellows Gallery

Thinking of ’70s L.A. now probably brings to mind the golden days of Laurel Canyon, antics on the Sunset Strip, or maybe a few New Age cults. But a new group show at Joseph Bellows Gallery peels away some of those layers of nostalgia to show images of how the region looked to photographers as they lived it.

Ave Pildas, untitled (from Bijou), 1975

Photographs courtesy of the artist and Joseph Bellows Gallery

Work in the show comes from photographers Bevan Davies, Philip Melnick, John Humble, Grant Mudford, Terry Wild, and Ave Pildas. The images selected from each artist capture small moments of how the city looked at the time. Some of the locations are still recognizable now, others have evolved more visibly in the ensuing decades.

John Humble, 178th Street at Manhattan Place, Torrance, September 20, 1979

Photographs courtesy of the artist and Joseph Bellows Gallery

1970s los angeles photographs
John Humble, Pacific Coast Highway at Alameda St., Wilmington, November 15, 1979.

Photograph courtesy of the artist and Joseph Bellows Gallery

The images are tied together by approach as well as subject matter. Rather than following the conventions of fine art photography of the era, the images in Los Angeles Circa 1970s are often more akin to photojournalism, capturing the occasionally gritty or imperfect moments.

John Humble, E St. at Wilmington Blvd., Wilmington, November 15, 1979

Photographs courtesy of the artist and Joseph Bellows Gallery

Also on display at Joseph Bellows Gallery is a collection of photography by Susan Ressler focusing specifically on corporate office interiors in the 1970s, but the photos in this show are primarily exterior scenes.

Terry Wild, Los Angeles, 1970

Photographs courtesy of the artist and Joseph Bellows Gallery

Los Angeles Circa 1970s will be up until November 30, 2018 at Joseph Bellows Gallery, 7661 Girard Ave., La Jolla.

Bevan Davies Holmby Ave., Los Angeles, 1976

Photographs courtesy of the artist and Joseph Bellows Gallery


RELATED: These Rare Vintage Photos of the Sunset Strip Will Transport You to the 1960s


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