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Industrial Arts in Long Beach

Everyone knows about Long Beach's gritty, industrial side: the harbor, the oil derricks, the mountains of shipping containers. But what about LB's more urbane, arty side? LAT, thinking the 'Beach's artistic flair has gone unnoticed for too long, goes on record with today's piece on the "fantasy oil islands of Long Beach Harbor".

These "fantastic" islands are actually a set of four man-made islands just offshore. The islands house 1,100 oil derricks disguised by It's A Small World curvilinear forms, landscaping, and waterfalls. The only things missing are a cast of international animatronic dolls and a saccharine theme song. At night, the islands are lit like a Polynesian bordello, easily seen from shore. Such whimsy!

The architecture and landscaping of the oil islands is the subject of an exhibit at the University Art Museum at Cal State Long Beach through October 15.
·Toasting Industry as Art [LA Times]