Alex does not omit the modern details. Emphasis upon the painting’s foreground directs the viewer’s focus onto a traffic signal holding cars at red stoplight. Stop. Focus.
The sand-squatting hulk of a grey concrete west highway residence takes up center space of this painting, and the beach itself, although public visitors have to stay “seaward of the mean high tide line.” A smudge of an orange 76 ball announces the gas station.
Telephone poles. A singular streetlight. Shadows lengthen across PCH suggesting late afternoon. The light is cool, so perhaps the season is winter, which would account for the noticeably minor flow of road traffic.
The coast road leads the eye north past Latigo Cove. Gratefully, here Alex indulges the viewer in an undeveloped landscape of muted colors of grey-green-brown, although this cove is heavily developed with the four-level Tivoli condominium complex, and many townhomes and single-family residences.
Phone and power lines form a wave pattern above the highway at the top of the rise. The pale sky, relatively indistinguishable above the horizon. A bit of each blends into the other.
Sandstone. Asphalt. Sea. Amarenth.
La Jolla Cove, painted by Alex Schaefer in 2009 ::
and here is the same view, painted in 1936 by Alfred Mitchell ::
Alfred Mitchell (1888 – 1972), “La Jolla Shores, 1936.”
Oil on canvas, 40 x 50 inches