DSC 0197 900x600

Photos by Asia Morris.

The Long Beach Museum of Art opened Vitality and Verve: Transforming the Urban Landscape on Friday evening during its After Dark event. A collaboration between POW! WOW! Long Beach and Thinkspace Gallery, the exhibit features works painted directly on the walls of the museum’s Hartman Pavilion by renowned contemporary artists such as Aaron Horkey, Alex Yanes, Andrew Schoultz, Audrey Kawasaki, Brendan Monroe, Brandon Shigeta, Cryptik, Esao Andrews, Greg ‘Craola’ Simkins, Hot Tea, James Bullough, Jeff Soto, John S. Culqui, Low Bros, Meggs, Nosego, Nychos, Saber and Tristan Eaton.

According to the LBMA, an estimated 3,000 unique visitors made their way through the museum’s doors, making it the biggest opening in the local art institution’s 65-year history.

A few attendees murmured that the exhibition was a bit like the Museum of Contemporary Art’s (MOCA) Geffen Campus’ 2011 Art in the Streets. The museum was so crowded, many guests voiced they were going to come back on a later date to fully realize the effect of each mural. That said, Vitality and Verve is certainly a show worth visiting more than once.

The Post was given the rare opportunity to document the installation process. We stepped through plastic curtains, rooms of scaffolding, strewn- about spray cans and paint buckets to thoroughly annoy the artists at work.

The two galleries featured below show photos taken during the three-week installment period and on Friday during the After Dark event when the finished exhibition was officially opened to the public.

Vitality and Verve will be on display through September 27. Click here for more information, museum hours and free admission days.


Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her @hugelandmass on Twitter and Instagram and at [email protected].