Tile & Architectural Reliefs

George D. Riddle

Distinctive decoration and bas-reliefs were worked into the facades of three buildings – Front Doorways (3): Large geometric ceramic tile installation; Auditorium west-facing wall: “Sower and Reaper”; Gymnasium Entrances: “Sportsmanship” and “Health & Beauty.” The auditorium’s cast concrete relief is of a Sower and Reaper. According to Art Historian, Dr. Louise Ivers, these symbolize the importance of studying hard and reaping the rewards later in life. This sculpture is the most abstract of the public school art work in Long Beach. The figures are reduced to simplified, angular shapes and are framed by zigzags. Students pass through two doors into the gymnasium. One depicts two sets of three stylized boys facing each other in a line, with the first two boys shaking hands, framing the word “Sportsmanship.” The other focuses on six girls, again stylized and shaking hands, this time framing the words, “Health & Beauty.” At one time the reliefs also spelled out “boys” and “girls,” over each respective doorway; those reliefs were removed by the School District sometime after 1991.



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Tile & Architectural Reliefs



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Address 540 Cerritos Ave Long Beach, CA (get directions)

GPS Coordinates 33.77383674465305, -118.17775571874213

Location Name Benjamin Franklin Middle School

Long Beach Transit Bus Routes

91, 92, 93, 94, 151

Dimensions4ft 6in x 5ft 6in to 4ft 6in x 7ft 6in

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Additional Images

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