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Baywatch Avalon

Sandow Birk Elsye Pignolet
Artwork Type
Media & Support
Glazed ceramic
10 ft.x 8 ft.* (3 x 2.4 m)
Avalon Lifeguard Paramedic Headquarters
440 Avalon Canyon Road
Avalon, CA
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Latitude: -118.329065 - Longitude: 33.340194
Image: Baywatch Avalon

Additional Images

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Artist Sandow Birk designed a ceramic tile mural for the curved wall of the Avalon Lifeguard Parametic Headquarters’ front entrance. He used a traditional “azulejo” blue and white glazing technique (seen in many Iberian buildings from the 15th Century onwards). The mural depicts the Avalon Harbor with a ship in distress near the horizon and a County vessel speeding to its rescue. This seascape is bordered by tiles inspired by the historic designss of the Catalina Tile Company’s designs as well as images of helicopters, lifeguard towers and means that the lifeguards use to save lives. Under than name Baywatch Avalon are dots and dashes that signal SOS in Morse Code, the universal distress call that the Lifeguard Division answers.

About the Artist

A Southern California native, Sandow Birk received a BFA from the Otis Art Institute of Parsons School of Design. He went on to receive an NEA International Travel Grant as well as Guggenheim, Fulbright, and Getty Fellowships. Birk has had over 40 solo exhibitions and many prominent collections possess his artwork, such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the DeYoung Museum, and the Harvard University Art Museum. He has completed public art commissions for the Los Angeles Police Department, the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), and the City of Long Beach. Long Beach is also where Birk currently resides and maintains a studio practice.