In the 1920s the artistic movement, California Regionalism, began to capture the everyday scenes of Southern California life, scenes that many citizens and artists in previous years considered routine or mundane. Artist Ralph Hulett (1915-1974), through his skill with a paint brush documented the arrival of the freeway to the Los Angeles area.
|Ralph Hulett seen painting above SR-110 in 1965|
“We’re in the midst of a violent revolution – the new replacing the old. We miss our old friends but have to make new ones. And the freeways will be among them,” said Hulett in an article, freeways on canvas, in the July to August 1966 issue of the California Highways and Public Works magazine.
Hulett’s paintings captured the change that Los Angeles and several other major metropolitan areas in the nation where experiencing as part of a federal effort to connect the nation via a vast network of freeways. Hulett’s paintings captured one of District 7’s earliest freeway master pieces, the four level also known as the Stack, and US 101 (Hollywood Freeway).
His paintings artfully display what some Angelenos considered as an attack on their way of lives and others viewed as move into the future. From the 1940s and on, hundreds of miles of freeways cut through Los Angeles, forever changing the region.