Photographer Tommy Kwak turns Miami Lifeguard Towers into Art

In 1992, Hurricane Andrew devastated the beaches of Miami, Florida. To lift the spirits of residents and tourists, the lifeguard towers were rebuilt using a vibrant color palette that still exists today. Recently, photographer Tommy Kwak captured these towers in a new photo book, Lifeguard Towers: Miami. Check out some of his eye-popping images below:

New York-based photographer Tommy Kwak has been documenting the lifeguard towers of Miami since 2019. He first came upon the pink tower on 17th Street and has since photographed all 30+ towers along the 8.5-mile stretch of Miami Beach.

In his photography series, Kwak captures each and every tower he has come across, showcasing their vibrant colors and structural idiosyncrasies. Set against minimalist beachy backdrops, the colorful towers become characters, each with its own personality and flair, leaping off the pages of the photobook.
Lifeguard Tower 5th Street, Miami Beach k – Clic

Tommy Kwak’s work explores the transience of landscapes and natural forms through ethereal large-format color photographs. His work has been shown throughout the US and in Iceland, most recently in commissions for Louis Vuitton at their locations in NYC, Seattle, and Cologne, Germany. He earned a BFA in Graphic Design from California College of the Arts in 2002 and completed photography courses at the International Center of Photography from 2006 to 2008. In 2010 and 2016, Tommy participated in the SÍM Residency program in Reykjavík, Iceland, as well as the international arts festival, Villa Reykjavík. Tommy grew up outside of Chicago, lived and worked in Brooklyn, NY for 13 years, and now resides in Montclair, NJ. He has been a member of Fowler Arts Collective in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, and SONYA (South of Navy Yard Artists).

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