If you have been in an American city of a certain size, you’ve likely passed by this type of building, possibly without giving it much attention. Artist Michael Murphy started giving them his attention upon returning to the US after living in England for several years, noticing their shapes and angles and colors with fresh appreciation. Trained as an architect, Murphy took to drawing and painting the Modernist buildings he encountered in San Francisco and then in Los Angeles, Palm Springs, and elsewhere.
Two years ago he opened a gallery called Supersonic Modern in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood. “Modern architecture,” he tells AIROWS, “is the synthesis of machine-age technology with architectural design, that’s how it started out in Germany. The Modernism movement didn’t really kick in in the United States until post-World War Two, but then it kicked in well.”
His original works are acrylic on canvas or paper. Prints on paper are available from $150 USD. In addition to identifiable buildings, he also has a series sprung purely from a creative imagination that’s been schooled in the mid-century design vocabulary, with geometric forms, nods to the romance of air travel, and yes, the occasional touch of tiki.
Book a TWA flight to visit his San Francisco gallery or shop online here.