"Never mind restoring a Los Angeles art aesthetic. Downtown seems determined to be "The Mural Economic Capital Of The World."
After its underground beginnings during 1970s New York, the last decade has seen street art become a close working partner with entrepreneurship. In many cases that includes murals. It's a delicate balance of commentary and business fueled by pop-art populism.
First, one has to admit that ethnic-based murals sometimes keeps its distance, since most of that authorship prefer to voice the underserved. Street art, on the other hand, is about city residency and experience -- or at least visitation rights by suburbanites -- without needing an exclusive tie to ethnicity.
That broader appeal works on several levels. When it borders on the fringe of fine art in urban public space, an urgent primal coded message is found on dinged abandoned blocks, passing on a secret to those looking for it. When it's placed on a large wall, it's pointed out as public art, and in Los Angeles, part of a larger legacy.
When street art killer bees pollinate the street art movement by blogging and tweeting out global images, it creates a demand, as seen in April around downtown Los Angeles.
During Art Walk, Brit Week opened at Farmer's And Merchant's Bank to bring awareness to creativity and innovation between Britain and the U.S. This lead-in to this Summer's Olympic Games in London will have the T4C Artists Competition Closing Ceremony and Art Battle LA,billed as a live competition "between four notorious names in the London and Los Angeles street and graffiti art scenes." Los Angeles' Man One and Mear One will be pitted against UK's Inkie and Eine on Thursday, April 26, at the Continental Gallery (408 S. Spring Street) to paint on recycled furniture pieces designed by Christopher Guy.
That project shows how Los Angeles packages street art as a creative import for the city."