First Street Store Mural concept drawing: Berliner and Associates.
“Story of our Struggle” is moving forward under the watch of the Chicano/Jewish Coalition. Often known as the First Street Store Mural, it makes a final step toward it's preservation as a Community Revitalization Project, according to Irma Beserra Núñez, coalition chair. The idea behind the rehabbed First Street Store Mural Wall, which will be called the Quetzalcoatl Pyramid Fountain and Educational Plaza, comes from a coalition press release.
Following a stringent Mural Preservation Plan, the entire Mural Wall will be moved back ten feet as the facade of the new charter high school. This will create an approximately 3,200 sq. ft. Educational Plaza in front of the building for students, the community, and tourists to gather, enjoy a more comfortable view of the Mural Panels, and gain an appreciation of community culture and history. Educational plaques will be placed below each Mural Panel describing the meaning in English and Spanish.
A Quetzalcoatl Pyramid Fountain will be constructed with a seating area around the Pond. In addition, there will be benches to sit and relax while viewing the mural, fountain and plaza. Lighting will be provided for each Mural Panel, the plaques, fountain and plaza to make it possible for everyone to enjoy, night and day, this exciting Chicano/Jewish Cultural Heritage Landmark.
The mural was to be taken down by Pacific Charter School Development to make room for a new building. After protests, portions of the mural were to be saved. Then through terse advocacy, the mural and facade is intact and will be part of the Alliance Media Arts & Entertainment Design High School.
The public hearing is set for 9 a.m. Wednesday, May 22, in Room 150 at the L.A. County Hall of Records (320 West Temple Street).
East Los Angeles Mural's Struggle is Over I KCET [view]
Photo by Sandy Rodriguez
Guest Editorial at KCET has Sandy Rodriguez write about the artists, including herself, who worked on the interior mural at The América Tropical Interpretive Center. view [KCET}
"Cityscape" by Andre Miripolsky in Pershing Square. Aug. 11, 2012. Photo by Helen Ly / viewfromaloft
Artist Andre Miripolsky updated his Downtown Los Angeles "Cityscape" sculpture, which also became a mural at Pershing Square. The sculpture itself sits in the offices of Central City East Association. The image became 15 X 50 mural, a Pac Mutual commission for Art-Squared Gallery at Pershing Square, an outdoor art program that reached its 5th year of exhibiting curated works in public space.
Behind the scenes here, I've been having interesting conversations with artists and muralists working on help set policy for the mural ordinance. In the eyes of some, this is a mural. For others, this piece should not be considered public art supported by the mural ordinance because: it was not painted by hand; it is an installation; and/or because it's on vinyl; or it is a "replica."
Here are some posts from the ongoing mural coverage at KCET.
From July 19: "L.A.'s Digital Divide" by Judy Baca.
I have long been proud to be a muralist in this city, as the designation was synonymous with being progressive and in favor of community voice; the most open minded stance. However, on July 12, 2012, a group of fellow muralists stopped the new mural ordinance passage, thereby continuing the ban against murals on private buildings in the City of Los Angeles. The most fervent goal of the group seemed to be to insure that innovation not occur in mural processes by those of us leading new innovative methods of production in muralism that include the use of technology.
They declare that a mural produced as a hand painted, fine artist-rendered, original artwork, printed and adhered to a wall, is not a mural. Only paint directly applied on the site, to a wall, is a mural. This argument to limit artist's means of production is reminiscent of a debate, a few years back, which argued that a mural painted with acrylic was not a mural; only murals painted in fresco constituted real murals, said past naysayers, and acrylic murals should not be subject to the protection of the VARA Act.
From August 8: "How to get the mural ordinance right" by Mural Conservancy of Los Angeles.
The distinction between "Original Mural Art" and "Public Art Installation" should be made as a consequence of an artwork requiring a safety inspection because it includes elements or is placed on a substrate that must be attached to a structure. Yet, rather than adopting language regarding public safety, the new draft makes a distinction based on artistic medium without regard for the installation process.
A hand-painted artwork applied directly to the surface of a wall does not require a safety inspection because it poses no risk of public safety after its completion. However, other processes do. Digitally printed images, for example, produced by printing the image on substrates ranging from light pliable materials to rigid constructions of wood or metal, must be attached to a wall somehow.
The definition should then be centered upon what seems obvious: is a safety inspection required? MCLA firmly believes that the privilege of defining what art is and what it is not, resides with artists, not with municipalities and commissions.
ALSO: A Mural Installation Isn't A Weapon of Mass Reproduction. [Ed at KCET]
"Peasant Saint" (2001) Norma Montoya and Yamilette Montoya Duarte. Photo: Helen Ly
A round-up of my mural and street art posts at KCET.org. Bonus: Woody Guthrie talks Skid Row.
The Cardboard and Chalk of Downtown L.A.
July 26, 2012: A series of recent pop-up street art, from chalk drawings to cardboard installations, has been designed to invoke political and social commentary.
A Mural Installation Isn't a Weapon of Mass Reproduction
July 24, 2012: Advocating for paint-only murals border on censorship and elitism, as well as contradict how David Siqueiros pushed technology until his passing in 1974.
'Peasant Saint' In Little Tokyo a Spiritual Mashup
July 16, 2012: A mural in Little Tokyo honors the Spanish, Jewish, American-Indian, and African-Americans that lived in the area before it became the center of Japanese American activity.
Mural Ordinance Grievances: What to Expect [UPDATED]
July 12, 2012: The mural ordinance hearing is currently under way. Here's a rundown of what to expect.
Guide: Downtown Art Walk, July 12, 2012
July 11, 2012: It's that time again.This checklist is a chance to take a look at what is happening in city core's art world.
Mural 'Replicas' Installed on the 101 Freeway
July 6, 2012: New mural replicas printed on recycled plastic and vinyl make the commute on the 101 freeway a little bit easier on the eyes.
From Lincoln Heights to Los Feliz: Woody Guthrie's Time in Los Angeles
July 17, 2012: Singer and songwriter Woody Guthrie, who would have been 100 years old last Saturday, found his writing voice in Los Angeles, specifically in Skid Row.
Muralist Judy Baca On L.A.'s Digital Divide
July 19, 2012: Muralists have embraced innovative technology to advance L.A.'s mural tradition -- but some paint-only advocates have been holding them back.