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Hugo Ballin's Los Angeles

Caroline Luce, Author

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Griffith Observatory - "Civil Engineering"

  • In Ballin's Words
  • Allegory and History
  • Dynamos
  • Source/Citations

Egyptian with ankh (symbol of life) - struggle of the forces within the earth - modern civil engineering

All characters here = representations - but Ballin puts Egyptian civil engineering on same plane as modern civil engineering -- draws a direct line, suggesting Egyptian civil engineers were as advanced as contemporary American ones - that white guy is inheriting the mantle from them

The two allegorical figures here = men struggling = "representing the struggling forces within the earth" - look a lot like Ballin's other dynamos in this period

Caption excerpted from John Mosley's pamphlet, "The Hugo Ballin Murals at the Griffith Observatory" (Los Angeles: Published by the Griffith Observatory, Department of Parks and Recreation, City of Los Angeles, 1998)

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