Goldwell

Open Air Museum

Open Air Museum

 

When people think of museums, images of long hallways, towering walls with art on them, and stuffy security guards monitoring people moving about float through the imagination.

 

A lot of museums are in big cities, but even small towns host a museum or two. Outdoor museums with no walls, and completely off the radar, spoke to the limitless boundaries the photographers sought. 

 

Unique in its history, Goldwell Open Air Museum sits in a remote location in the middle of the Nevada desert.

Near Death Valley National Park, Goldwell basks in the Mojave Desert sun and boasts the claim of “Art Where it Seemingly Shouldn’t Be….”

Originally, Albert Szukalaski and a team of Belgian artists designed and built the 13 larger-than-life, ghost-like statues, called “The Last Supper.”

Over the years, other visual artists have donated their art pieces to the museum. The museum has been a creative breeding ground for other art installations such as “Sit Here!,” a colorful tiled couch; “Lady Desert: The Venus of Nevada,” a block statue; “Ghost Rider,” a ghost statue mounting a bicycle; and many other other-worldly pieces of art.

14 ONE COLLECTIVE REPS - 11 PHOTOGRAPHERS - 3 DAYS

Near the museum, but actually part of the Rhyolite ghost town, Tom Kelly’s Bottle House, a small structure constructed with glass Adolphus Busch beer bottles and mortar. In the Bullfrog Hills, Kelly collected 50,000 beer bottles from the nearly 50 saloons in operation in the 1905 boomtown of Rhyolite.

 

With little lumber or other building materials, Kelly devised a plan to use his resources to build this three-room house that families resided in until 1969.

 

In today’s world, this particular structure isn’t accessible to the general public, but with a promise and a handshake, the caretaker allowed the OneCollective photographers and reps to be onsite as long as the group guarded the house from the general public’s access. 

 

While the art of the museum isn’t necessarily retro in style, much of it does have the vibe of a vintage, bygone era, which is the direction OneCollective decided to go with outfit styling.

 

From the ‘80s colorful nylon attire to the ‘70s bell bottoms, fur coats, halters and funky shades, to the ‘60s pleated skirts with vinyl knee-high boots, vintage styles brought this eclectic place alive. 

 

 With a final promise of locking the gate surrounding the Bottle House, the OneCollective photographers and representatives left the ghost town and museum in the dust and headed to the next location.

 

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