By Lea Lion
If you have waited at the intersection of Portia Street and Sunset Boulevard recently, you may have noticed a new face in town. It is the larger-than-life image of an elderly woman who appears to be looking out over the Echo Park hills.
Wheat-pasted on the side of the brick apartment building at 1641 Sunset Blvd., the mural is the work of French street artist JR, who put up dozens of murals around Los Angeles in late February as part of his “Wrinkles of the City” project. JR is also one of the artists included in MOCA’s street art blowout “Art in the Streets”.
In February, JR installed a mural of an old man – one eye open, one eye shut — on a congested stretch of Glendale Boulevard in Echo Park. The new Sunset mural is one of two that JR put up during a three-day layover on his way to Japan. “Just time to kick two walls,” his right-hand-man Emile Abinale said by email. “He is in Tokyo now.”
In any case, JR certainly is not the only street artist making his mark in Echo Park these days. The new mural overlooks an abandoned Meghna gas station that has become a de facto street art gallery.
Don’t miss the back side of the old gas station sign to catch JR’s version of a wink: One giant half-shut eye.
Photos by Lea Lion