New York City Street Artist Brings Star Wars Whimsy to Long Beach


Photo by Asia Morris.

With what appears to be an ode to the late Carrie Fisher and her time spent as Princess Leia of Star Wars, New York City-based street artist “Tom Bob” has painted a fire hydrant just outside the Expo Art Center in Bixby Knolls.

In an Instagram post  showing the completed work over the weekend, the artist quotes the once double-bunned heroine, “I don’t want my life to imitate art. I want my life to be art.”

Tom Bob is known for turning the most inconspicuous objects of urban cityscapes into colorful, cartoonish works of art. Visualize a storm drain-turned-oreo, skillet or even roadkill. Passersby and First Friday strollers may get a kick out of this new addition to Atlantic Avenue.

The Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association (BKBIA) “wooed” the artist into Long Beach by way of former First Fridays coordinator Victoria Wells, according to BKBIA Executive Director Blair Cohn. Fans can expect to see more Tom Bob pieces pop up in Bixby Knolls and throughout Long Beach over the next two weeks. So keep your eyes peeled!

Expo Art Center is located at 4321 Atlantic Avenue.

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Asia Morris has been with the Long Beach Post for five years, specializing in coverage of the arts. Her parents gave her the name because they wanted her to be a world traveler and they got their wish. She has obliged by pursuing art, journalism and a second career as a competitive cyclist.