November 15, 2011

Tuesday, November 15, 2011 - ,, No comments

LA Times' Richard Winton Reports on the LA City Council's Mural Ban and the Lost Art

Street art and advertising mix (Beverly & La Brea)
Photo by Catherine Sezgin
by Catherine Schofield Sezgin,
ARCA Blog editor-in-chief

Richard Winton reported for the Los Angeles Times on October 24th "L.A. to draw a finer line on murals as art, not ads". In his article, Winton reports that Los Angeles' City Council "is revising a 2002 law regulating the artworks as a commercial signage. He reported:
"Officials estimate that more than 300 murals have been painted over in the last several years, a fact that has frustrated artists as well as property owners who commission murals."
The issue is not graffiti, but the rights of building owners to commission art for the exterior buildings which apparently conflicts with the rights of advertisers to monopolize billboards and building fa├žades in the city. Mr. Winton reports:
Mural near Gold Line stop in Little Tokyo
(Photo by Catherine Sezgin)
"City officials said they need to make a better distinction between art, which should be protected under the 1st Amendment, and commerce, which should be covered by the sign ordinance."
He identifies the destruction of "some of Los Angeles' most famous murals on public and private property".

Los Angeles' streets, filled with cars and slowed by traffic, are more interesting and more human with the display of public art.