Jinks Room

Maynard Dixon

1914. Gift of the McCaslin Family. Collection of the USC Fisher Museum of Art. Permanent loan. Ronald Tutor Campus Center, University of Southern California.

The Jinks Room murals are on permanent loan from the USC Fisher Museum of Art, as part of the new USC Fisher Museum of Art @ Campus Center partnership. Maynard Dixon (1875-1946) was a noted illustrator, landscape, and mural painter of the early 20th century American West, who was also once married to famed American documentary photographer Dorothea Lange (1895-1965). Dixon was commissioned to paint The Jinks Room murals in 1914 by Anita Baldwin McClaughry, daughter of Arcadia's first mayor Elias Jackson "Lucky" Baldwin, in the Anoakia Mansion of Arcadia. Later, McClaughry's home became the Aoakia School for Girls until it moved in 1990, sometime after becoming coeducational. Since the Anoakia mansion was torn down in 1998, murals and artifacts from the home have been preserved in museums and universities throughout California. USC Fisher Museum of Art acquired these six pieces of the total nine Jinks Room murals. The three remaining pieces will also eventually become part of the USC Fisher Museum of Art's permanent collection.

An Art History course in curatorship taught by USC Fisher Museum of Art's Director Selma Holo and Art History Professor Richard Meyer uncovered additional history about the murals. It was originally believed that the murals were painted in the children's playroom of the Anoakia Mansion back in 1914. Art History student Francisco Rosa, class of '10, discovered that in fact this "playroom" was not for children. Allegedly, the Jinks Room was a venue where the McClaughry family threw lavish parties, whose guests included early-twentieth century Hollywood celebrities. Through inspection of the murals' content, one can see the reflection of their past nearly a century later.

Back to: Select Art at the Ronald Tutor Campus Center complex, University of Southern California