Businesses that are reopening, save your plywood murals for this outdoor gallery

The Downtown Long Beach Alliance announced over the weekend they will be facilitating an outdoor gallery to give the murals painted by local artists on boarded up businesses a second life.

Business owners who have removed their boards can contact DLBA Placemaking Manager Mariah Hoffman at [email protected] for more information or to have their murals collected to be displayed. Business owners and/or artists can also fill out the Google Form here. Mural pick-up is only available to Downtown area businesses.

The DLBA requires approval from both the artist and business owner to collect the work. While some businesses plan on keeping their murals, Hoffman said most have been willing to give their works to the outdoor gallery project.

Mural by artist Kiki Onaga (@onagasan) at Modica’s Deli in Downtown Long Beach. Tuesday, June 9, 2020. Photo by Asia Morris.

“The images painted on boarded up businesses in the past week are powerful and represent a significant moment in our city’s history,” Hoffman said. “As businesses began to remove boards in order to reopen, community members, business owners and artists expressed a desire to retain the murals as a testament to our community’s solidarity and strength.”

Artists have painted portraits, including of George Floyd, as well as messages of solidarity in line with the Black Lives Matter movement, anti-police brutality and social justice. Artist Whosvlad, one of the many artists who took to painting murals on businesses from The Loft on Pine to Portuguese Bend Distilling, said it was his way of rebuilding.

The DLBA is in the process of finalizing the date and location of the outdoor gallery.

“The intent is to keep the art free to view and accessible to the public,” Hoffman said.

More details to come.

Murals at Wine Mess at 1770 E. Broadway. Tuesday, June 9, 2020. Photo by Asia Morris.


Support our journalism.

Hyperlocal news is an essential force in our democracy, but it costs money to keep an organization like this one alive, and we can’t rely on advertiser support alone. That’s why we’re asking readers like you to support our independent, fact-based journalism. We know you like it—that’s why you’re here. Help us keep hyperlocal news alive in Long Beach.

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.