Tuesday, July 24, 2018

10 BEST Public Art in Los Angeles

MOST POPULAR PUBLIC SCULPTURES, 
STATUES, MURALS AND FOUNTAINS 
IN LOS ANGELES

#1:  "Urban Light" :: THE UNDISPUTED BEST   

If you haven't been there, go there. This hugely popular streetlamps sculpture also produces a mesmerizing effect when walking between the lampposts.  It is lighted and open 24/7 with security staff on hand due to its round-the-clock popularity.

Simon Rodia's 99-ft. towers are surrounded by his whimsical mosaic and sculptural art.  Always something new to be discovered.  Did you know the place's real name is "Nuestro Pueblo"?

Commonly called "The Four Ladies of Hollywood," this very Hollywood tribute to the Golden Age of female screen starts, near the Hollywood Walk of Fame, has statues of Mae West, Anna Mae Wong, Dolores Del Rio and Dorothy Dandridge supporting a statue of Marilyn Monroe.

#4:  Venice Public Art Walls   
These free-standing public art walls are continuously painted by the most talented graffiti artists in L.A., and they showcase L.A.'s most original and incredible mural work. Because the walls are frequently painted over by subsequent artists, there are always astonishing and fresh contributions.

#5"Giant Binoculars" :: WHAT'S INSIDE? 

This building-mounted sculpture fronts both the building entrance and an upper-level meeting room.  Who resides behind the "binoculars"?  Google offices, of course.  

And across the street, Jonathan Borofsky's 30-foot "Clown" has been freaking out folks for 3 decades, and in 2014 a restoration of the mechanical kicking leg movement added to the bizarre impression.
  
Also titled "The Pope of Broadway," this is L.A.'s biggest downtown mega-mural at FIVE stories high: Anthony Quinn having fun as "Zorba the Greek."  The famous role continues to prompt spontaneous "Zorba the Greek" dance flash mobs throughout the world.

Standing beneath this piece uneasity, you can't but feel the astounding engineering suspension and balance of this huge sculpture in the Museum of Contemporary Art public plaza.
  
Its famous midnight trek across L.A. from the Riverside quarry made headline news, and now you can dance under all 340 tons of it.

A design take-off on the multi-faceted Rubik's Cube, the "Oomo Cube" celebrates the diversity of the world on each of the cube's many rotating images.
  

AND BEYOND L.A. just a bit...

The historic fountain from the 1930s has a colorful evening lighting program focused on the fountain sprays, visible from busy boulevard traffic.

This was Southern California's most stellar public artwork of 2017, a 20,400 lb. double cylinder sculpture inspired by the ancient Cyrus Cylinder declaration of human rights.  Learn more here.  It is awe-inspiring.
   
Who can resist Santa Monica's ferocious water-spewing topiary dinosaurs along the Third Street Promenade?  'Nuf said.   


Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Guide to Venice Beach Murals

THE FAMOUS VENICE MURALS ON & NEAR THE BOARDWALK

Listed in order from the NORTH end of Ocean Front Walk to the SOUTH end of Ocean Front Walk

"Endangered Species"
"Endangered Species" (1990) by Emily Winters.

Ocean Front Walk at Park Avenue








"Homage to a Starry Knight"
"Homage to a Starry Knight" (1990) by Rip Cronk.

Ocean Front Walk at Wave Crest Avenue






"Venice Beach"
"Venice Beach" (1990) by Rip Cronk.

1101 Ocean Front Walk [5th story]











"Venice Beach Chorus Line"
"Venice Beach Chorus Line" by Rip Cronk.

Ocean Front Walk at Clubhouse Avenue








"Venice Kinesis"
"Venice Kinesis" (1989/2010) by Rip Cronk [after Botticelli].

Speedway Ave. at Winward Ave.











"Touch of Venice"
"Touch of Venice" (2012) by Jonas Never.

Speedway Avenue at 21 Winward Avenue








"Morning Shot"
"Morning Shot" (1991) by Rip Cronk.

Speedway Avenue at 18th Place


















"Arnold Schwartzenegger"
Arnold Schwartzenegger" (2013) by Jonas Never.

Speedway Avenue at 18th Place









"Luminaries of Pantheism"
"Luminaries of Pantheism" (2015) by Levi Ponce.

Ocean Front Walk at South Venice Blvd.




Venice Public Art Walls @ The Venice Boardwalk

Lazy strolls along the Venice Beach boardwalk let us revisit the many famous Venice murals.
But take a detour off the boardwalk at Winward Avenue, walk out onto the warm sand, and you will catch Venice's fabulous mural show in progress:  graffiti artists at their craft working with incredible colors and designs.


The Venice Public Art Walls   (formerly "The Graffiti Walls") can be painted by just about anyone, which is why all sides of the long walls and structures are always covered with an amazingly diverse collection of graffiti styles.  The artists' works have been photographed throughout the years and archived by community organizations.

Who can paint?  Just about anyone!
Managed by STP-LA Foundation
   info. on applications/rules (as of 7/22/16):  info@stpla.org or bruno@stpla.org, (424) 264-6564

"Endangered Species"
THE FAMOUS VENICE MURALS ON & NEAR THE BOARDWALK:

"Endangered Species" (1990) by Emily Winters.  Ocean Front Walk at Park Avenue

"Homage to a Starry Knight" (1990) by Rip Cronk.  Ocean Front Walk at Wave Crest Avenue
"Venice Beach"

"Homage to a Starry Knight"
"Venice Beach" (1990) by Rip Cronk.  Ocean Front Walk at Wave Crest Avenue

"Venice Beach Chorus Line" by Rip Cronk.  Ocean Front Walk at Clubhouse Avenue

"Venice Kinesis" (1989/2010) by Rip Cronk [after Botticelli].  Speedway Ave. at Winward Ave.

"Touch of Venice" (2012) by Jonas Never.  Speedway Avenue at Winward Avenue
"Venice Beach Chorus Line"
"Venice Kinesis"

"Touch of Venice"
"Morning Shot" (1991) by Rip Cronk.  Speedway Avenue at 18th Place

"Arnold Schwartzenegger" (2013) by Jonas Never.  Speedway Avenue at 18th Place

"Arnold Schwartzenegger"
"Luminaries of Pantheism" (2015) by Levi Ponce.  Ocean Front Walk at South Venice Blvd.
"Luminaries of Pantheism"

"Morning Shot"






























Wednesday, January 25, 2017

"The Pope of Broadway" Beautifully Restored

"The Pope of Broadway" has a new reason to dance - the 4-story mural depicting Anthony Quinn in his famous "Zorba the Greek" role, mid-step, is now even livelier.

Restoration has just been completed for Eloy Torrez's 70-foot high mural on the south side of the former Victor Clothing Co. building, facing Third Street.

Affectionately named "The Pope of Broadway," efforts to refurbish the mural began in early 2015 by the Mural Conservancy and Councilman Jose Huizar.  Funded by a Bringing Back Broadway mural restoration grant of $150,000 from Greenland USA, the restoration repaired surface cracks and paint failure.


The restoration renews Anthony Quinn's rich legacy for Los Angeles, 
and we're all DANCING!




Friday, January 20, 2017

"Triforium" Reinvents Itself For 2020

The Triforium Project could reinvent both the polyphonoptic tower and the civic park space.


"Triforium" (1975)
by Joseph L. Young
Despite L.A.'s recent public art achievements like "Gateway to Los Angeles" above the 101 Freeway and  "Psychogeographies" at Columbia Square, "Triforium" , the 60-foot polychonoptic tower across from the Civic Center, has remained a notable civic challenge for 40 years.

At long last, renewed and inspired interest in the massive 60-ton tower of music and light has come from The Triforium Project, a coalition of artists, urban planners, civic leaders and L.A. enthusiasts eager to update the kinetic sculpture with the interactive function and quality that artist Joseph Young originally planned and anticipated.  With LED lighting and 21st Century sound programming, The Triforium Project would  also create an interactive app allowing the public "to send polyphonoptic (sound and light) compositions for the Triforium to play, inviting artists to engage directly with the work."

The Triforium Project's technological and creative improvements are exciting to anticipate, especially considering the enlivening benefits to Fletcher Bowron Square and the Los Angeles Mall that are newly possible with support from Los Angeles Recreation and Parks, Cultural Affairs, and City Councilman Jose Huizar.  Urban planning and public space design can now build upon the Triforium's reinvigorated "triangulation" function of social nexus for the public space (to cite William H. Whyte's concept), and equally creative and site-specific improvements can play their role in enhancing the surrounding Square, Mall and Civic Center.


Monday, August 8, 2016

"Liquid Shard" Sky Dragons at Pershing Square

Dancing in the air above Pershing Square is August's MUST-SEE public artwork

"Liquid Shard" is at its best with the kick-up of late afternoon breezes that lift and ripple the entire suspended sheet almost 150 feet. The effect is incredible - huge waves roll up from the west to the highest point and twist the mylar sheet into the shape of an undulating dragon. 



L.A. Recreation and Parks teamed up with Now Art LA and Patrick Shearn from Poetic Kinetics to create a unique kinetic work for Pershing Square.  Working with international architecture students from the Architectural Association Visiting School/Los Angeles, 3-D computer simulations were generated to design the 15,000 square foot sheet of thousands of holographic mylar strips attached to a mesh of high-tech fiber rope.  The sheet is suspended with bungee cords from the Pershing Square clock tower and palm trees.

BEST VIEWING TIME FOR EFFECTS OF LIGHT AND WIND:  
5:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. 

DURATION OF INSTALLATION:  
the temporary installation began on July 27 and was scheduled to end August 11, which may be extended due to huge popularity. 




Thursday, June 30, 2016

The Central Library at 90: Public Art Abounds



"Light of Learning"
(1926) by Lee Lawrie
As the beloved Los Angeles Central Library reaches 90 years young, it's a fascinating time to enjoy the Library's two distinct eras of public art and architecture.  For the original 1926 Goodhue building, the exterior limestone bas relief sculptures were artistically fused into the architectural facades.  The interior murals, stencil painting and sculptural lighting were designed in tandem with the architectural structure of walls, arches and ceilings.

With the Library's renovation in 1993, new sculptures and murals were integrated into the restored Goodhue building, the new Bradley Wing and Atrium, and the Maguire Gardens.

The Library Chandeliers

Compare the different approaches to integrating public art and architecture with the Library's famous chandeliers.  In the Goodhue Building Rotunda, the bronze and glass "Zodiac Chandelier" draws the view upward to the painted sunburst ceiling.  In the Bradley Wing Atrium, skylights flood the hall with light, illuminating the chandeliers and lamp sculptures as well as the glass-fronted reading rooms. 

Bradley Wing Atrium
"Natural, Technological, Ethereal"
(1993) by Therman Statom
"Illuminations"
(1993) by Ann Preston
Goodhue Building Rotunda
"Zodiac Chandelier"
(1926) by Lee Lawrie
"Americanization of California" mural
(1932) by Dean Cornwell
untitled rotunda ceiling stenciling
(1926) by Julian Garnsey