The CityWide Mural Program Blog

Artists Mary-Linn Hughes and Reginald Zachary restoring the mural
Artists Mary-Linn Hughes and Reginald Zachary restoring “Love is for Everyone” at Minority Aids Project

Connect with us to receive updates on our progress of conserving the murals of Los Angeles. The Citywide Mural Program is a pilot program by the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs that aims to conserve historically significant artworks and create new public murals. SPARC’s Citywide Mural Program Blog will cover the conservation of 9 beloved murals from the perspectives of the original artists, building owners, community members, and the SPARC crew.


Johanna Poethig returns to LA to digitally restore her iconic mural July 20, 2016admin

Through SPARC’s CityWide Mural Program, preservation of “Calle de la Eternidad” originally painted in 1992 as part of SPARC’s Neighborhood Pride Mural Program, is now going through a digital restoration in our UCLA@SPARC Digital/Mural Lab. Since the original facade of the building was demolished, so was the mural. SPARC’s intent is to bring this iconic mural back to its home on Broadway Blvd.

johanna calle digital

“SPARC’s dedication to the mural movement, innovative approach to preserving this mural and all the parties involved in this effort, are a testament to the importance of monumental murals as landmarks in our cities. I want to express my gratitude to everyone who is working to save this mural.”  – Johanna Poethig, original artist.


Calle de ...


6 Iconic Murals Restored in 2016: CityWide Mural Program UPDATE! July 19, 2016admin6 Iconic Murals Restored in 2016: CityWide Mural Program UPDATE!
(Click on booklet to enlarge image) Follow SPARC on Issuu for more updates on our CityWide Mural Program!


The CityWide Mural Program Conservations 2015-2016 May 6, 2016admin

The SPARC & DCA CityWide Mural Program

Mural Conservations for 2015-2016

Click on each image to enlarge.

1 Before - Daryl Wells

“Not Somewhere Else, But Here” by Daryl E. Wells (Before)

1 After - Daryl Wells

“Not Somewhere Else, But Here” by Daryl E. Wells (After)

2 Before - Mary Linn Hughes

“Love is for Everyone” by Mary-Linn Hughes and Reginald Zachary (Before)

2 After - Mary Linn Hughes

SPARC Interviews Noni Olabisi, Artist of “To Protect and Serve December 23, 2015adminSPARC Interviews Noni Olabisi, Artist of "To Protect and Serve

SPARC is proud to be sponsoring the conservation of “To Protect and Serve” by Noni Olabisi, located at the corner of Jefferson Blvd and 11th Ave. Noni has been working with the CityWide Team since early December to repair 23 years of sun damage. During her conservation work, Noni took some time to answer some of our questions. “To Protect and Serve” was sponsored in 1992 by the SPARC Neighborhood Pride Program, as part of a collection of 105 murals for the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA). SPARC’s CityWide Mural Program is a pilot project by the DCA that will restore a total of 9 historically significant murals across Los Angeles.  

SPARC: Noni, thank you for taking time from your busy painting schedule to answer a few of our questions. Your mural, “To Protect and Serve” is known as one of the most powerful artworks of the Neighborhood ...


SPARC Interviews Christina Schlesinger before her arrival to restore “Chagall Returns to Venice Beach” December 11, 2015admin


SPARC is very excited to be hosting our co-founder, Christina Schlesinger for the conservation of “Chagall Returns to Venice Beach” at the Israel Levin Senior Center. She will join our CityWide Team beginning Monday and complete the last remaining repairs by December 22nd. Before her arrival, we asked Christina a few questions about what it was like to work on the original mural in 1991, and her later restoration in 1996. The mural is part of the Neighborhood Pride Collection of 105 murals done for the City of Los Angeles sponsored in part by the Department of Cultural Affairs and dozens of community-based organizations, schools, and private businesses.

For more information on “Chagall Returns to Venice Beach”, see the mural’s history page by clicking here.

SPARC: Christina, thank you for taking time from ...


The CityWide Team begins the conservation of Noni Olabisi’s “To Protect and Serve” December 11, 2015admin

Olabisi Panorama

After 21 years of being out on the sunny streets of Los Angeles, Noni Olabisi’s “To Protect and Serve” is now receiving much needed conservation repairs. The historic artwork depicts the social services created by the Black Panther Party. Bobby Seale, Huey Newton and Angela Davis are memorialized in the mural as the demands of the party to end policy brutality and the murder of Black People, the right to land, bread, housing, education, clothing, justice and peace contextualize the powerful narrative. You can see the CityWide Mural Team apply SPARC’s very own MuralShield below and instantly restore the sun-faded acrylic paint.

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Charles “Boko” Freeman’s “Return to the Light” Conservation Complete! December 10, 2015adminCharles "Boko" Freeman's "Return to the Light" Conservation Complete!

The conservation of Charles “Boko” Freeman’s mural, “Return to the Light” is now complete! SPARC’s CityWide Mural Team along with Boko spent several weeks meticulously repairing the mural from vandalism and delamination. Our conservation technicians removed a significant amount of graffiti, most likely vandalized with a pressurized fire extinguisher. Despite appearing faded, once the binder was consolidated with MuralShield, a majority of the portraits became immediately vibrant. Now that the conservation is complete, this Highland Park gem will remain vibrant for many more decades. The mural can now be viewed off of the 110 freeway towards Pasadena. The mural is located on the south facing wall of the Carlota Park Apartments, 227 E. Ave 41, Los Angeles, CA 90031.

The Carlota Park Apartments has historically been a home for low income seniors. Today, the apartments continue to serve seniors and families with marginal incomes. The mural design features very prominent Mexican and Chicano historical ...


The Conservation of “Not Somewhere Else, But Here” by Daryl Wells September 30, 2015adminThe Conservation of "Not Somewhere Else, But Here" by Daryl Wells

The conservation of “Not Somewhere Else, But Here” by Daryl Wells

This mural emphasizes the themes of community service, social actions and education that the National Council of Jewish Women of Los Angeles endorses. Wells depicts influential and prominent women of varied ethnic backgrounds building community and sharing struggles through the act of “breaking bread” together. Furthermore, it is both homage to the women it depicts and also a gesture to the community in support of multiculturalism. The women depicted from left to right are: Betty Friedan (author and activist), Barbara Boxer (senator), Hannah Senesh (poet and holocaust rescue mission fighter), Dolores Huerta (United Farm Workers Union co-founder), Lee Krasner (artist), Barbara Jordan (congresswoman and civil rights worker), Emma Goldman (anarchist and labor rights activist), young woman of the Ethiopian Jewry, Aung San Suu Kyi (elected president of Burma, was put under house arrest), Lillian Hellman (playwright), Rigoberta Menchu (Guatemalan human ...


Historic AIDS Mural Saved from Destruction July 10, 2015adminHistoric AIDS Mural Saved from Destruction


“Love is For Everyone” by Mary-Linn Hughes and Reginald Zachary (1991)

Twenty four years following its creation, one of the first public murals to address Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is scheduled to be restored, revived, and renewed! “Love is for Everyone” by artists Mary-Linn Hughes and Reggie Zachary, was originally commissioned in 1991 as part of SPARC’s dynamic Neighborhood Pride Program. During 1988-2002, Neighborhood Pride employed over 95 different established and emerging muralists from Los Angeles and around the country, trained hundreds of youth apprentices, collaborated with countless community organizations, and The City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), all to produce images that speak to the multi-ethnic communities that make up our city. In recent years, the mural has ...