Americana in the Sonoran Desert

POSTED BY on Apr 14, 2008

I'm always on the lookout for eccentric little graphic links to the past.

The more kitschy, the better: Maybe it serves as an antidote to all of the digital precision I work with every day. I took some shots of older (and some newer) signage, art and neon on a recent trip to Arizona.

This kind of stuff is becoming harder and harder to find in the Northwest, perhaps because of our booming economy and the resulting razing and rebuilding. I also blame it on our weather, which ensures that any ferrous metal will meet a certain, rusty death.

In the dry Southwest, things go through more of a mummification process and you tend to see more good tidbits from the 50s, 60s and 70s. Even when things do get around to deteriorating, they frequently get left up as a peeling testament to the 100 degree heat. There are now outdoor junkyard "museums" devoted to the stuff. A Google Images search for "Las Vegas Boneyard" yields a wealth of retro typography.

Who knows...with all of the other preservation movements afoot in Seattle, are we ripe for a "Save Our Signage" campaign?


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