Friday, November 14, 2008

Public Abstract

Somebody hung a nice-looking poster on the south face of this building on Raymond Avenue. I don't know who the artist is. It kinda looks like a Miro to me, but since I couldn't find this exact picture online I can't be sure. I was telling Pasadena Adjacent it reminds me of a picture my mother hung in our playroom when I was a kid. I was never much into abstract art.

This poster may be temporary. It isn't listed on the city website's public art walking art tours. (If you like that web page I suggest you bookmark it. The city's website is full of great information but it's organized by department - perfect if you think like a bureaucrat, but since I don't it's difficult for me to find what I need there. I tried searching the site for "public art." They're called "Public Art Walking Tours" after all. But I came up with nothing.)

But that's a minor complaint. The good thing is there's so much public art in Pasadena! To me, that's the mark of a world-class city. Paris, London, Chicago...I've never been to New York, but I hear...well, you've gotta have public art. In museums, sure, that's fine, but it's also got to be out there in the parks and on the streets as part of daily life! Life should be lived with beauty. Pasadena knows how to do that.

It's a nice surprise to see a big, cheerful poster on the side of a building! It's like a belly laugh in the middle of nowhere for no reason at all except the fun of it.

24 comments:

Cafe Observer said...

I've always loved that building.
Somehow, that mural fits in with the old building.

Sharon said...

I love this poster. It looks exactly like the way I tend to doodle. There must be a bit of abstract artist in me.

Keith said...

That's a great poster. I love the way the light makes just that side of the building stand out.

altadenahiker said...

Still scoping out the coffee houses? Did you try/mention the Coffee Gallery in Altadena? Probably...

Susan C said...

Petrea, you and the other daily photographers also bring a little art and insight into our lives every day. Such a lovely gift!

pasadenaadjacent.com said...

Thanks Petrea
I've put together a post that connects us. Next time I run into trouble with nay sayers, I'm going to channel your wise words. One of the things that encouraged me when I first started visiting blogs was the amount of public art being posted. As you well know. I'm happy to see bloggers are not only posting public art but making an attempt to find out the authors of the work and linking their web sites when possible.

ben wideman said...

Very cool! I need to figure out where this is.

Petrea said...

I like this building too, C.O. I love all the older brick structures in downtown Pasadena.

Sharon, you could make big bucks with your doodles!

Keith, it was great pre-storm light the day I took this - last Monday, I think, day before election day.

I was at the Coffee Gallery this morning, AH. I hope the pictures turned out. I've mentioned it in comments but not blogged about it. Good egg croissant!

Susan! You sweetie! (Susan was at the Coffee Gallery this morning, too. IWOSC meeting. One sees all the best people there.)

PA, maybe I could have found out more if I'd gone into the building. That nags a bit. One can always do more. But I like that you think I'm wise.

Stand at the corner of Raymond and Union, Ben. Look north and up. Can't miss it (if it's still there).

Bernie K. said...

It it were a Calder, there'd be a rabbi, a doula and a goat instead of clouds … if it were an Arp, the clouds would have hard edges … a Magritte: the sky would have a canvas texture … an Escher: well …

Vanda said...

All big empty walls should have murals on them. They wouldn't even have to be very good. Blank walls are wasted opportunities. I'd rather look at a mural than a billboard.

Sarah Jayne said...

Greetings Mr K

A Calder would have a circus made from coat hangers (he spent a part of his childhood on Linda Vista Ave in Pasadena). Your thinking of Chagal?

USelaine said...

I like it. I like many of Miro's paintings too. I'm used to not understanding things, so abstract works well for me.

Laurie said...

More public art!!! I love the wonderful Kent Twitchell murals in Los Angeles, many which have unfortunately fallen into horrible disrepair and vandalism.

Here's what Kent has been up to this year, as taken from Wikipedia:

In 2008 Twitchell settled a lawsuit against the U.S. Government and 12 other defendants for painting over his 70-foot tall landmark mural of Edward Ruscha, an important Los Angeles-based Pop artist. The settlement amount – $1.1 million – is believed to be the largest settlement ever under the seldom-invoked Federal Visual Artists Rights Act (VARA) or the California Art Preservation Act (CAPA). VARA and CAPA forbid desecration, alteration, or destruction of certain public works of art without prior notice to the artist to allow for removal. The U.S. Government is contributing $250,000 to the settlement amount. William Brutocao, with the intellectual property law firm Sheldon Mak Rose & Anderson PC, served as Mr. Twitchell’s lead trial attorney in this complex and legally-challenging case. “This settlement sets an important precedent which will benefit other artists,” said Mr. Twitchell. “This resolution makes it clear that when it comes to public art, you have to respect the artist’s rights, or incur significant liability.”


Go Kent!!!

Christie said...

I love murals on buildings. We have at least 4 that I know of in our small town of 6,000 people, but they do add something to the surrounding area. Very fun!

Miss Havisham said...

Art, and I do mean a fine piece of artwork or a well executed installation does something to the viewer, whether they realize it or not. It shifts something inside.
It talks to that part of us that may be nonverbal--some territory of our interior that has no voice, only a pulse.

Ms M said...

I really like (most) public art; it can add so much to a place. Thanks for sharing this one with us.

Bernie K. said...

Sarah Jayne said ... "Your thinking of Chagal?"

My thinking of Chagall—what? My thinking of Chagall would correct my error about Calder? My thinking of Chagall has distracted me from staying in my lane? My thinking of Chagall would be more appropriate were we not surrounded by werewolves in lamé …? Que?

USelaine said...

Bernie, if you think everyone will get your point, you're mistaken.

As my wise grandfather, with a firm grip on English usage and spelling, used to say, "Is that mine, or yerin?"

Mademoiselle Gramophone said...

When I think of Chagall I think of the gypsy violin in Carmen.

Sorry, this has nothing to do with anything. It's just a gratuitous music link.

Petrea said...

I do like an empty wall from time to time. It depends on the wall, the light, the shadows...

Amazing story about Twitchell, Laurie. I imagine he'd have rather spent his time otherwise. But that's heroic.

Christie, I've seen some of Petoskey's murals on your blog. They're quite elaborate and full of history, if I'm remembering right.

Bernie, your nuts.

Bernie K. said...

I beg your pardon.

Dina said...

Sometimes I get so involved in the comments I forget what exactly your post was about. ;)

USelaine said...

P, I haven't laughed out loud for that long this late in ages.

Petrea said...

Elaine, I'm glad you were awake for that. Dina, too.

Sarah Jayne, in all the grammar chit-chat I forgot to say "welcome." Thanks for the information about Calder. I'd never known he was a Pasadenyite. That's a fascinating tidbit.