About Gas and Glamour - Car Culture and Architectural Advertising in mid century Los Angeles ABOUT Gas and Glamour I love cars and I love Los Angeles for being a city of cars. Over the last decade or so, I have been intrigued by LA's love affair with the automobile, tracing back to a time when cars themselves were objects of beauty. Those cars are no longer on the streets today but the buildings from that era remain. My interest in this story is primarily about this car culture's manifestation within the city's built environment, especially its 'surface streets' (ordinary city streets), where there was once a time when the car and the act of driving was celebrated, and these streets once allowed a unified mental image of an urban texture to be retained - a sense which is now improbable and destroyed by freeway architecture, which has reduced entire communities to a name on the exit sign. As an architectural photographer, I wanted to connect with that lost design history and capture L.A.'s car-culture-induced optimism and ambition reflected in polychromatic, star-spangled coffee shops, gas stations, car washes, and others that once lured the gaze of passing motorists.