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June 20, 2024 @4:18 pm

Opening reception on Friday, February 2, 2024. 5-7 pm for LBMA members and VIP guests, followed by public viewing from 7-10 pm.

Join us to celebrate the opening of Wires Crossed: The Culture of Skateboarding, 1995-2012, on Friday, February 2, 2024.

Member Opening: 5-7 PM • FREE

Public Opening: 7-10 PM • $10 per person

Become a Member and see it first or rejoin to attend the exclusive VIP and Member Reception. Member reception includes free drinks and small bites.

  • Top Image: Ed Templeton, Mike Maldonado skates a full pipe, Davenport, Iowa, 1998, Gelatin silver print, 52 x 36 inches, Courtesy of the artist

About the Exhibition

Ed Templeton: Wires Crossed: The Culture of Skateboarding, 1995-2012

In his first solo museum exhibition in the United States, the Long Beach Museum of Art presents Ed Templeton’s 17-year photographic project, Wires Crossed: The Culture of Skateboarding, 1995-2012, which explores youth culture through Templeton’s lens and peers into the lives of amateur and professional skateboarders, whom he traveled the globe with while skateboarding for video productions, competitions, and demonstrations.

Wires Crossed is part memoir, part documentation of the DIY, punk-infused subculture of skateboarding as it came of age in the 1990s and early 2000s, and pulses with the raw, combustive energy of Templeton’s image-making from the last twenty-plus years. Through photography, collage, text, maps, and eclectic ephemera from Templeton’s archives, Wires Crossed offers an inside look at a significant facet of youth culture as it was being born.

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Templeton occupies the rare position of having been a professional skateboarder, two-time World Skateboarding champion, and artist working within the skateboard community as it gained increasing cultural currency in the 1990s and beyond. This work, much of it previously unpublished and unseen, explores Templeton’s journey as an image maker, as well as the lives of professional skateboarders as they spent long hours crisscrossing the world on tour, reveling in their newfound status as a rock star–like figures and the eternal search for new terrain to skate. It is a showcase of the distinctive aesthetic that sprang from the influential skate culture Templeton helped create.

This exhibition and companion book demonstrate Templeton’s ability to capture what this life is like on film from the inside out, shooting the triumphs and disasters equally, the blood and the pain, boredom, self-medication, lust, toxic masculinity, and all the transitory moments behind the scenes. He paints an honest and gritty portrait of what it was like to be a skateboarder in a time before cell phones, scabs and all.

On view February 2, 2024 – May 5, 2024

Art shown from left to right:

  • Ed Templeton, Portrait of Tosh Townend, Melbourne, 2000, Gelatin silver print, 14 x 20 inches, Courtesy of the artist
  • Ed Templeton, Self-Portrait, Texas, 1998, Gelatin silver print, acrylic ink, 11 x 14 inches, Courtesy of the artist

About the Artist

Ed Templeton (b.1972) is an American painter and photographer whose work reflects human behavior with emphasis on youth subcultures, religious affectation, and suburban conventions using a cinéma vérité approach embracing chance encounters. Templeton is a respected cult figure in the subculture of skateboarding, a two-time world champion, and a Skateboarding Hall of Fame inductee. He is best known for his photographic books and multi-media exhibitions. His work has been exhibited in museums worldwide, including MOCA, Los Angeles, ICP, NYC, Palais de Tokyo, Paris, S.M.A.K. Museum, Belgium, Bonnefanten Museum, Netherlands, Kunsthalle, Vienna, Pier 24 Photography, San Francisco. Museum collections: MOMA, SMAK, Orange County Museum of Art, Bonnefanten Museum, Maastricht, and Long Beach Museum of Art.

Accompanying Book

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Ed Templeton: Wires Crossed

The exhibition is accompanied by an extensive hardback publication of memoirs depicting skating as a subculture between 1995 and 2012. The book contains drawings and photos, some of which are painted and have additional texts, which have been grouped intuitively by Ed Templeton. The English-language artist’s book is published by Aperture and is available for purchase in the Long Beach Museum of Art’s Museum Gift Shop.

ISBN: 9781597115360


Tickets are non-refundable.


    Long Beach Museum of Art
    2300 East Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90803
    Long Beach, CA 90803 US
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