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Tiki Central Forums » » General Tiki » » show us your Barney West
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show us your Barney West
nui 'umi 'umi
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 21, 2011
Posts: 2453
From: La Mirada Atoll
Posted: 2015-12-21 11:26 pm   Permalink

Here’s a couple at Polinesio in Havana Cuba taken in Oct. of this year. First two pix are of the same tiki.




I posted these on another thread back in October but I think they’re mo betta here.


 
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nui 'umi 'umi
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 21, 2011
Posts: 2453
From: La Mirada Atoll
Posted: 2015-12-21 11:26 pm   Permalink



[ This Message was edited by: nui 'umi 'umi 2015-12-21 23:29 ]


 
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HopeChest
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 19, 2015
Posts: 272
From: East Bay, CA
Posted: 2015-12-22 09:06 am   Permalink

As if Barney West wasn't intriguing enough already...

"There were three of them, Frank Lee Morris, the brains of the outfit with an IQ of 133, and the Anglin brothers, Clarence and John W. … would their plan work? Sometime in the early hours of June 13, 1962 they put their plan to work and escaped from Alcatraz. Their bodies were never found but in Sausalito, the escape raft washed up at the foot of Johnson Street and was discovered by artist Barney West. The police were called and the scene took on a life of its own."

Now THAT is random.


 
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nui 'umi 'umi
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 21, 2011
Posts: 2453
From: La Mirada Atoll
Posted: 2015-12-22 2:55 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2015-12-22 09:06, HopeChest wrote:
As if Barney West wasn't intriguing enough already...

"There were three of them, Frank Lee Morris, the brains of the outfit with an IQ of 133, and the Anglin brothers, Clarence and John W. … would their plan work? Sometime in the early hours of June 13, 1962 they put their plan to work and escaped from Alcatraz. Their bodies were never found but in Sausalito, the escape raft washed up at the foot of Johnson Street and was discovered by artist Barney West. The police were called and the scene took on a life of its own."

Now THAT is random.


Wow! :^ )


 
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8FT Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 30, 2003
Posts: 1400
From: Kansas City, MO
Posted: 2016-06-30 3:03 pm   Permalink

On ebay now is this unidentified photo but I recognized it right away. It is a copy but if you like it here is a link: http://www.ebay.com/itm/12-By-18-Black-White-PICTURE-1966-Chevrolet-BelAir-4-door-wagon-by-Totem-pole-/221582338422?hash=item3397562976:g:aYgAAOSwQJ5URpIK&vxp=mtr



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Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 5053
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 6 days ago; 4:28 pm   Permalink

8ft,

Thanks for posting that photo, I bought the photo and it ended up in Sven's new book The Art of Tiki!

Here are a couple old Polaroids of Barney West's compound in Sausalito.





And a photo of a big one that was located in the Southgate Shopping Center in Sacramento.



If you compare the last two photos you can see that the Sacramento Tiki got a bit of a circumcision before being displayed in public in front the children!

DC


 
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 8797
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 3 days ago; 10:45 pm   Permalink

I was looking for dates of birth and death on Barney West for my On This Day in Tiki History. I read about how he was in the Merchant Marine in the South Pacific and that his ship was torpedoed. That we was stranded on an island for 6 months and learned to carve from the natives, escaping from the island just before the Japanese attacked. Very cool

Then I read that his name was Cecil Westerberg (nicknamed Barney), that he got into trouble for smoking marijuana (oh the horror ) and that he learned to carve as part of his "rehabilitation" Then he shortened his name from Westerberg to West and made up the story about South Pacific!

I'm not trying to speak ill of the man and it wouldn't the first time someone embellished their past. Anyone know anything of this?


 
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 8797
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2 days ago; 10:34 am   Permalink

Here is the text of that book excerpt, from The Tender Soldier: A True Story of War and Sacrifice to guard against net-rot. Written by Vanessa M Gezari, based on interview with Montgomery Carlough McFate, who's mother was married to Barney West before she married Montgomery's father.

"Sometime around 1950, Frances Poynter and her husband, Cecil Westenberg, made their way to the San Francisco Bay area They bought a property near the Mount Talalpais ridgeline in the Muir Woods and opened a small business - McFate thought it might have been a restaurant. At some point Westerberg, who went by the nickname of Barney, got arrested for dealing marijuana. As part of his rehabilitation, he learned to carve wood. "He basically changed his name and created an entire fictive narrative for himself", McFate told me. Instead of Cecil Westenberg, he became Barney West.

West told people he had served in the merchant marine and been shipwrecked on a Polynesian or Micronesian island. During his time on the island, he said, the natives taught him how to carve wood. This was in the early 60s, a decade after the publication of Thor Heyerdahl's Kon Tiki, when Elvis Presley starred in Blue Hawaii and Hula Hoops and tiki bars were the rage. In McFate's view, America's cultural obsession with Polynesia streched back even farther, to Margaret Mead's Coming of Age in Samoa. The cultural eye, Mc Fate told me, was focused on Polynesia.

Poynter and West moved to Sausalito, a city just north across the bay from San Francisco, and started a little woodworking shop called Tiki Junction, where West carved giant, iconic Tikis that he sold to Trader Vic's, a Polynesian themed restaurant; McFate's mother painted the carvings. West, a handsome, muscular man with a handlebar mustache, relied on his story of shipwreck and native tutelage to give the carvings authenticity, and to patrons of Trader Vic's, with mai tais in hand, they were indistinguishable from the real thing. He had found a way to turn mid twentieth century America's facination with the primative to profit, but the cultural artifacts he supplies were "all fake", McFate told me, it was all made by Barney, painted by my mom.

McFate's mother and West eventually divorced..."
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aquarj
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 02, 2002
Posts: 1105
From: SF bay area, CA
Posted: Today; 09:26 am   Permalink

Great stuff, thanks for sharing!

-Randy


 
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