On the shores of the Salton Sea, the near ghost town of Bombay Beach hosts a fascinating collection of art and sculpture that suspends all preconceptions of what a small town is or should be.
Lead by the Bombay Beach Arts & Culture, they have organized the transformation and creation of pieces around the town. Through hosting artists in residence, they have achieved a quirky and intriguing collection that keeps you guessing on every street corner.
The Bombay Beach Drive-In a perfect example of the sense of humor the artists have infused into the town.
Many of the pieces involve the graphic transformation of forgotten homes.
As you pass by each one, you begin to wonder about the story that lead to this moment.
Urban decay or art?
The gates to the defunct, albeit manufactured, Bombay Beach Estates housing community.
I don't know if it's supposed to be a secret but the Bombay Beach Estates was created by artists to be precisely what it looks like. Hundreds of hours of work and creativity went into it's placement and curation.
The town's sense of humor is always present.
Bombay Beach is more than just abandoned buildings. Some people's homes have made the transformation to quirky art pieces too.
Down by the shoreline, you come across an area that looks like Burning Man came and never left.
On the shoreline
Art on the shoreline in Bombay Beach
The amazing airplane sculpture is an amazing feet of art and engineering. It's at this point you know you've seen something special and that you have to let more people know this exists.
As you leave Bombay Beach and drive along the Salton Sea, you begin to think about it's unusual beauty; a strange balance of the harshness of the desert with the sounds of waves rolling in from the lake.
Even outside Bombay Beach, you get the feeling that everything is a canvas for someone.
Even a train marooned in the desert.
North of Bombay Beach the community is coming together to provide for the people who call this area home. Even this building, the North Shore Beach & Yacht Club, was once abandoned but now serves as a community center and gym. Is it possible change will also come to Bombay Beach?
All of the photos in this article and over a hundred more are beautifully displayed in UNEXPECTED: Salton Sea.