Sven A.Kirsten

[Pop Culture - Tiki - Polynesian Pop]

New 2020 edition Bibliotheca Universalis. Mid-century America was a conservative place, and Tiki was a thrilling, exotic and daring departure which proved so enticing that its influence extended to fashion, music, eating, drinking, and architecture. Many U.S. servicemen were also stationed in the south Pacific during the war, and formed a lasting connection to the region, bringing back souvenirs and stories when they returned. America was so in love with Tiki that it absorbed Hawaii, the northernmost Polynesian island archipelago, as its 50th state in 1959. It’s not hard to see why Tiki Culture took off in America. The perfect antidote to the repressed society of the time, Tiki’s strongly sexual overtones – hip-swaying, bare-breasted hula maidens and the dangerous appeal of savage masculinity – were just what the doctor ordered. It really was a world away, and bars and restaurants made the most of the intoxicating imagery, creating a recognisably American version of Polynesia full of fierce wooden masks, heady cocktails in coconut shells, and cool dappled terraces shaded with palm fronds. It also brought associations of beach life inland.

Taschen (2020) 640 p. 14 x 20 cm - Hardcover - In English, German, French

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