Back to the Fifties

Posted 5/16/06

CAPE MAY – Do you remember color schemes in pink and charcoal, sofas covered in Naugahyde, plastic palm trees, and cars with fins?

If you do, you’ll feel right at home at MAC's newest exhibit at the Carriage House Gallery at the Emlen Physick Estate, 1048 Washington St., Cape May.

Opening on Friday, May 26, “Back to the Fifties,” focuses on popular culture of the 1950s, including family lifestyle, cars, music and architectural design.

Using artifacts from Wildwood’s Doo Wop Preservation League and private collections, “Back to the Fifties” brings the rollicking Doo Wop era to life with vintage living room and kitchen pieces as well as a collection of ‘50s television sets.

Wildwood photos illustrate the distinctive architecture of the period, with its space-age imagery, tropical themes and colors, and spectacular neon signage.

Guest Curator Elan Zingman-Leith, also a collector of ‘50s memorabilia, sasy the fifties are the antithesis of Victoriana.

“On one end of the spectrum,” he said, “you have the beautiful and simplistic Danish modern designs, and on the other, the impractical – not to mention uncomfortable – Naugahyde-upholstered furniture.”

The exhibit will stir many memories in those who come to see it.

The grand opening of the “Back to the Fifties” exhibit is at 7PM May 26 and is free to the public. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts (MAC), the exhibit runs through Sept. 3. The Gallery is open daily; hours vary. Admission is $2 for adults and $1 for children (ages 3-12) or free with any tour of the Emlen Physick Estate. For more information, call (609) 884-5404.

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