Charles Phoenix Talks Kodachrome Slides and Retro Vacations at Palm Springs Modernism Week
Jena Ardell Charles Phoenix takes us across America
While Angelenos were getting pummeled with rain on Friday, attendees of Palm Springs Modernism Week were enjoying sunshine and chrome at the Vintage Travel Trailer Show before heading to Charles Phoenix's Retro Vacation Slide Show Tour of the U.S.A.
Yes, it was the perfect day to mosey through Keith McCormicks's Collector Car Show or browse the Braniff Airline Exhibit, which featured vintage airline advertising and a collection of 14 vintage uniforms, most designed by Pucci and Halston.
The real fun, however, would come later in the evening, in the Riviera's swanky Grand Ballroom with Charles Phoenix's slideshow in full swing.
While ogling vintage Airstream trailers, I chatted with Phoenix about his Kodachrome collection and his loyal fans, who he describes as an "eclectic blend" of individuals between the ages of 35-55.
"When teenagers get it, that's the ultimate compliment," Phoenix said.
Phoenix, who has been collecting Kodachrome slides for the past 18 years, employs a "slibrarian" to tend to his ever-growing collection every Wednesday.
Jena Ardell Charles Phoenix takes time to relax in Palm Springs
Phoenix compares digging through hundreds of slides from the 1940s-1960s to "panning for gold... looking for information and elements of great photography", and believes "great photography is accidental".
Midway through our conversation, a modern-day rockabilly greaser and his wife, who was also decked out in 1950s garb-- complete with vintage cat eye glasses and red lipstick--spotted Phoenix.