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"Lifeguard and Bather," Stylized Art Deco Beach Scene by MacGurrin, 1938



Reminiscent of the work of Gerald Murphy in its use of strong colors and flat, highly-stylized forms, this depiction of a lifeguard in profile, a female bather-cum-mermaid with a fashionable hat and starfish hands, and sailboats in the distance, is a marvelous example of late 1930s Art Deco-Cubist painting. The painter was Buckley MacGurrin, who studied and exhibited in Paris for years, but had roots in the Midwest and is strongly identified with California as well. He served as a Hollywood set designer in the 1920s before going to Paris, and again for Paramount Studios when he returned to California in the 1930s, but he also exhibited at the Stendahl Art Galleries and Dalzell Hatfield Gallery in Los Angeles. MacGurrin worked with the Federal Art Project during the Depression, eventually becoming the supervisor for Los Angeles County and Santa Barbara, and executed a number of murals in Southern California, including a set for the Los Angeles County Art Museum. This painting is gouache on artist board; the painted area is 12.5 inches high by 9 inches wide.


  • Dimensions
    Height: 16.25 in. (41.28 cm)Width: 13 in. (33.02 cm)Depth: .1 in. (2.54 mm)
  • Style
    Art Deco (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
  • Condition
    Painted area is in excellent condition; margin around painting shows several smudges, and surface tearing on lower righthand corner.
  • Seller Location
    Philadelphia, PA
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU865122060462

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    Rates vary by destination and complexity.
    Ships From: Philadelphia, PA
  • Return Policy

    This item cannot be returned.

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About the Seller
5 / 5
Located in Philadelphia, PA
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Established in 2005
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