john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA
 

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

the pan american highway has long served as inspiration for films, books and artists, and none more so than for photographer john margolies. for years, margolies documented his journeys across the country by capturing the unique, and often bizarre, buildings and sculptures that stand along the roadside. comprising of over 11,700 images, the library of congress has now released the entire photo series – titled ‘roadside america’ – to the public.

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

teapot dome gas station, zillah, washington (1987)

all images by john margolies, courtesy of library of congress

 

 

the staggering collection offers an extensive insight into the quirky architecture that defines the highways in the USA. up until his death in 2016, margolies captured numerous diners, gas stations, road signs and literal architecture. some of the most weird and wonderful photos include an auto center masquerading as a dinosaur and a hot dog shaped eating hole. 

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

bob’s java jive, tacoma, washington (1979)

 

 

photographed on film over four decades, margolies also published a book of his favorite images, offering a nostalgic look at the north american culture. whether loved or loathed, the buildings are undoubtedly fascinating and the collection takes viewers on journey through a landscape of the american dream.

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA  

the donut hole, straight-on view, no cars, amar road, la puente, california (1991)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

coney island dairyland, end detail, route 285, aspen park, colorado (1980)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

leaning tower of pizza, quincy, massachusetts (1984)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

the whale car wash, oklahoma city, oklahoma (1979)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA  

wigwam village #6, route 66, holbrook, arizona (1979)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

hat n’ boots gas station, route 99, seattle, washington (1980)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

pagoda gas station, harley sprague, milwaukee, wisconsin (1977)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

log cabin motel office, san leandro, california (1978)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

aztec motel, diagonal view 2, route 66, albuquerque, new mexico (2003)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

terrace drive-in theater, terrace way, bakersfield, california (1987)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

milk depot gas station, horizontal view, 900 south & 140 east, salt lake city, utah (1981)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

club cafe sign near santa rosa, new mexico (1987)  

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

big fish supper club, route 2, bena, minnesota (1980)

john margolies’ roadside america captures the weird and wonderful architecture of the USA

harold’s auto center, spring hill, florida (1979)

 

 

project info:

 

project name: ‘roadside america’

photography: john margolies

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