September 28, 2020 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Graffitied Main Street Wall Receives New Lease On Life:

On the corner of Ocean Park and Main Street, a formerly whitewashed wall is beginning to regain the community spirit of its eventually graffitied predecessor, muralist Jane Golden’s “Ocean Park Pier.”

Local artist Kristel Lerman and members of Inside Out Community Arts are bringing art back to the wall.

Earlier this week when they were using the sidewalk as a makeshift studio someone shouted at them with support from their car.

‘That’s so cool!’ The person smiles and waves before they continue driving toward the ocean.

“We get that a lot, it’s so funny. It’s really fun to see a mural this big come to life,” Varina Bleil, Inside Out’s executive director of education, said.

The work-in-progress is a collaboration between Lerman, nonprofit arts organization Inside Out, ZJ Boarding House who leases the building that contains the wall, and global marketing and communications agency SelectNY, who is funding the project.

The wall’s revival has been a long process that began when Golden’s original mural depicting faceless figures walking the Ocean Park Pier during the 1920s endured excessive graffiti. After much debate and written permission from Golden to ZJ Boarding House to paint over the mural, plans to create a new mural moved forward.

Inside Out, an organization that transforms the lives of youth in underserved communities through arts and media education, has used the mural to integrate their educational program with visual art.

“Because of SelectNY making it possible for this mural to happen, we evolved our summer program into researching and exploring the themes of ‘Magic and Logic’ in really creative ways,” Bleil said. “We did a photography outing, we’ve done theatrical skits, they’ve done lots of painting. They learned a lot about California state standards and visual arts.”

Lerman and the Inside Out children, who are all middle school aged, have researched and collaborated together to create a mural that borrows themes and stories of the Chumash people, a Native American people who historically inhabited southern coastal regions of California. Lerman and the Inside Out group visited a Chumash Indian site to learn about their philosophies and culture.

“This is their moment to be able to say something to their community, which is why there’s so much about protecting their environment, and why to them, ‘Magic with Logic’ is how the Chumash spoke to them about how they honor their ancestry,” Bleil said. “They honor their culture and traditions, but they also have a very forward-thinking way of promoting their intense investment in marine ecology and environmental issues.”

Lerman said the mural has evolved through discussion with her young helpers.

“We’ve all kind of gone through this research project together as a team. The mural is a collaboration. I had my own vision…and then I let them have their own ideas and creations from the research. We all had very similar visions,” Lerman said.

Lerman said that she helped the kids transform their initial literal ideas in creative ways. “This whole mural is very dream-like. Its not a literal mural, its something that you walk by and you’re fascinated by, and you’re like, “wow”, and it makes you feel,” Lerman said.

Luis Cortez, a 13-year-old participant of the Inside Out program, said he enjoyed the group process.

“I learned when doing a mural, it’s better to work in a group. You get better ideas and more opinions,” Cortez said.

He also said that while he sometimes got nervous at all the people who watched as they painted the wall, he focused on his task and his vision for the mural.

“I see the mural as representing different elements of Santa Monica, the Chumash Indians, and the environment,” he said.

Lerman, whom this mural has been a passion project for several years, said she hoped the art will be finished within the next couple of weeks.

“This big white wall has kind of been a hurdle to get over, a mountain to climb – there’s a million analogies,” Lerman said. “But I say that together as a team we will conquer this white wall and turn it into a beautiful piece of art.”

in News
Related Posts

OpEd: The Miramar Project Will Be a New Architectural Jewel

September 27, 2020

September 27, 2020

The Miramar Hotel has been a central part of Santa Monica’s history and an integral part of the community for...

Edify TV: Trident Center Redevelopment

September 25, 2020

September 25, 2020

The Westside’s Trident Center is getting a major overhaul and new name as part of a flurry of development in...

Miramar Project to go Before City Council Tuesday

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

Councilmember Gleam Davis asks City Attorney whether she should rescue self from vote  By Sam Catanzaro  Santa Monica lawmakers will...

SMa.r.t. Column: Needed, A Heart Transplant

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

We have written about adaptive reuse in previous columns and have postulated that with proper incentives, the existing one, two...

Edify TV: Boulders Blocking Westside Encampment

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

City officials recently removed boulders placed on sidewalks by some Westside residents to prevent the formation of a homeless encampment....

Should Council Member Davis Recuse Herself From Voting? Santa Monica Beat – September, 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Should Council Member Davis Recuse Herself From Voting? * Increases In...

SMC to Be Online for Winter and Spring 2021

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

College cites lack of available vaccine  By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica College (SMC) has announced it will be delivering classes...

Edify TV: Al Fresco Program Ending?

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

During a COVID-19 pandemic many restaurants have found aid through the City of Los Angeles’ Al Fresco dining program, but...

Local Breweries Say They Have Been Unfairly Shuttered as County Passes Grant Program

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

$10 million grant program approved by Board of Supervisors  By Sam Catanzaro Will a $10 million grant program be enough...

Santa Monica Loses Vegan Restaurant

September 23, 2020

September 23, 2020

Space housing Santa Monica vegan restaurant Viva Vegan up for lease By Sam Catanzaro A vegan restaurant in Santa Monica...

Risks Posed by Wildfire Smoke

September 22, 2020

September 22, 2020

UCLA pulmonologist on how people can tell if the wildfires are making them sick By Toi Creel Even if you...

Will Los Angeles County See Another Spike in COVID-19 Cases?

September 22, 2020

September 22, 2020

County health officials keeping close eye on data this week By Sam Catanzaro Los Angeles County health officials are monitoring...

Edify TV: Santa Monica Fire Department Fighting Blazes Across State

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

The Santa Monica Fire Department has been busy helping combat wildfires burning throughout the state. Learn more in this video...

Lawmakers and Residents Take Steps Towards Police Reform

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Santa Monica residents will soon have more control of policing after local lawmakers took significant steps to reform the Santa...

2020 Census Due September 30th: Santa Monica Beat – September, 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * 2020 Census Due September 30th * Bobcat Fire Reaches Historical Size...