January 19, 2021 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Aviation Art Takes Flight: Supersonic Palette”Looks Back in Time

by Sam Skopp 

This past Sunday the Museum of Flying, located on Airport Ave at Santa Monica airport, unveiled a new exhibition showcasing the works of Mike Machat, who is an L.A.-based aviation artist, author, and historian. The exhibition is titled “Supersonic Palette” and consists of seven original paintings and five limited edition, signed lithographs. Proceeds from the sales of all exhibited works benefit the museum.

“I was born into an aviation family,” said Machat, about how he got his start as an aviation artist. He and his uncle, who worked in the aviation industry, would build models together, which led to Machat wanting a career as a pilot – until he required prescription glasses at 5th grade. He started drawing planes instead. “I did it as a kid because I loved it and it was fun, but at that time, I had no idea it would turn into a lifetime career.”

As part of the Santa Monica Art Walk, as well as one time a month during the summer, Machat does what he calls “Stump the Artist,” asking participants to name an aircraft he then has to draw with a marker. As he draws the plane, he explains its history to the audience, and then gives the drawing to the person who requested it.

“It’s a lot of fun because it usually involves a story. For example, an older gentleman will ask for a certain airplane, and it turns out he flew it in Vietnam. There’s always some connection when people call out an airplane,” said Machat.

Also being exhibited in the hallway housing the works that were unveiled on Sunday are three murals painted by Machat, all paying homage to the Douglas Aircraft Company, which famously built its DC model of commercial airliners, and was originally headquartered in Santa Monica, directly across from where the museum now stands.

Much of the time Machat spent painting these murals was during the hours the museum was open. Some airline enthusiasts made return trips to see these works through the creation process.

“My favorite story, is when I was doing the airliners, I had a couple of kids who really knew a lot about airliners. They came at least once a month to watch. They had these airline seats set up facing the mural. The kids would sit there, and they would fasten the seatbelts. It warmed my heart. It was so wonderful,” said Machat.

Each of his murals is of planes built by the Douglas Aircraft Company, either at their original Santa Monica home, or after their relocation to Long Beach. His first mural is a straight representation of the ten DC-series airliners. The second – which was designed to incorporate an actual electronics panel embedded in the museum wall, that became part of the painting – is of the six Douglas Aircraft planes built for the Navy. The third mural is of three “X-planes,” positioned on the wall so that they appear to be contiguous with model airplanes suspended from the museum ceiling, that were originally hung in the Douglas Aircraft Company building.

“I feel like we really touched some people by being able to tell the Douglas story through artwork. That’s why we’re here,” said Machat.

For more information about the museum, visit museumofflying.org. 

in News
Related Posts

Santa Monica Pier Ferris Wheel to Turn Amber as Part of Nationwide COVID-19 Memorial

January 18, 2021

January 18, 2021

Pacific Park joins nationwide COVID-19 memorial Tuesday night By Chad Winthrop The Santa Monica Pier ferris wheel will light up...

City Council Has Appointed An 11 Member Civilian Police Oversight Commission: Santa Monica Beat – January, 17, 2021

January 18, 2021

January 18, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * City Council Has Appointed An 11 Member Civilian Police Oversight Commission...

Video: 25K New Housing Units in LA?

January 17, 2021

January 17, 2021

With a massive spike in homelessness forecasted, LA lawmakers want to build 25,000 new housing units. Learn more in this...

Edify TV: Overhaul for Canyon Property?

January 15, 2021

January 15, 2021

A unique Santa Monica Canyon property may be getting an overhaul. Learn more in this video made possible by School...

Edify TV: The Westside’s Best Pies

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Here are some of the best pies on the Westside ahead of National Pie Day on January 23. Learn more...

City Council Votes Mayor Himmelrich And Team To Keep Council Positions: Santa Monica Beat – January, 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * City Council Votes Mayor Himmelrich And Team To Keep Council Positions...

65-Year-Old Santa Monica Bakery on Verge of Shutting Down

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Westside Food Scene January 14, 2021 By Kerry Slater 65-Year-Old Santa Monica Bakery on Verge of Shutting Down  A beloved...

Food Review: The Westside’s Insanely Delicious Tijuana Tacos

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Tacos 1986 in Westwood Village stands out amid a crowded taco scene By Kerry Slater In a city filled with...

Santa Monica Pier Closed for Five Days in a Row

January 13, 2021

January 13, 2021

City cites warm weather forecasted for Santa Monica By Sam Catanzaro With temperatures reaching the 80s expected, city officials are...

Edify TV: Westside Kids Compete to Keep Beach Clean

January 12, 2021

January 12, 2021

Westside kids are competing to keep the beach clean! Learn more in this video made possible by Santa Monica College.

Santa Monica Fire Department Rolls Out Vaccinations

January 12, 2021

January 12, 2021

SMFD helps with rollout across county  By Chad Winthrop Beginning this month , Santa Monica Fire Department firefighters and paramedics...

SMC and MLK Westside Coalition’s 36th Annual Celebration of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 12, 2021

January 12, 2021

Mon, Jan 18, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM Online Only at 9am on Jan. 18th – Visit: MLKjrWestside.org  The Rev. Dr....

Assemblymember Richard Bloom Announces Intention to Run for L.A. County Supervisor

January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

State rep. looking to replace Sheila Kuehl in 2022 By Sam Catanzaro With incumbent Supervisor Sheila Kuehl signaling she won’t...

Man Jumps to Death at Santa Monica Place

January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

Man jumps off parking structure in Monday suicide  By Sam Catanzaro A man died by suicide Monday after jumping off...