Where to find LA's best street art.
To the rest of the world, Los Angeles is but a few things: popular Santa Monica, star-studded Malibu, quirky Venice, and of course, Hollywood. To its denizens, it’s an eclectic metropolis that’s effervescing with many colors, tastes, and textures. Its streets, for one, are decorated with painted walls showcasing captivating street art and vibrant murals. Here are some of its best and most Instagrammable ones.
Armed with our trusty iPhones, my millennial and I took to the streets to call on and document some the city’s best facades, with me as the photographer and him as my reluctant model. Follow us on our multicolored LA wall crawl.
The Geometric Wall
WHERE: 12120 Venice Blvd
The weekend farmers market may draw in the crowds to the area on Sundays, but the wall at the National Council of Jewish Women Thrift Shop in Culver City is also an attraction worth pulling over for. This gorgeous, multi-colored, geometric wall boasts different hues of yellow, pink, blue, and purple as well as a few animals. A couple of outfit changes and you’ve got yourself a proper photo shoot.
The Multicolor Brick Wall
WHERE: 302 Pico Blvd
While video rental store Vidiots has long closed its doors, its popular yellow, teal, and turquoise mural lives on. Dubbed as “Saskia,” it’s one of LA’s most popular painted walls, even though it was done not by a street artist but by one Joe Nicoletti of paint company Chameleon Paintworks. This colorful brick façade boasts two different faces: the vibrant yet more somber yellow and teal color block side, and the fun, old brick breaker game-esque side. Take your pick.
Rock Paper Scissors Building
WHERE: 2308 Broadway Ave
Speaking of variety, it’s hard to beat Rock Paper Scissor’s LA headquarters in Santa Monica. The film editing company’s entire brick exterior is wrapped in a color-blending mural that flaunts sections of rich blues, pinks, purples, greens, and yellows adorned with paint splatters and eccentric circles. To round it up are paintings of an angel and a pile of skulls. It’s without a doubt one of the most striking buildings on the Westside. Take a step back to admire it from a distance, then come closer and photograph at your heart’s content.
The Goddess Wall
Los Angeles artist Colette Miller’s “Angel Wings” are, by now, a household name. What started in the streets of LA is now a global project that is seen in many countries and cities around the world. In Downtown LA, however, right at the intersection of Flower and 8th, the famous mural is taken to a new level with a bold, larger-than-life declaration that each one of us is a “goddess living in a city of angels.” Yes queen. Who doesn’t want an Angel Wings photo in front of this wall?
WHERE: 770 S Flower St
In 2014, The Bloc LA’s bare concrete walls received a complete and permanent makeover from San Francisco-based artist Chris Lux. The best one of his three-part project might just be the abstract three-wall mural mere steps from the Goddess Wall. Though not quite as popular as its celebrated neighbor, it’s an imaginative and colorful visual feast set on a white background. It’s another downtown LA must-stop.
WHERE: 1660 S La Cienega Blvd
The Mondrian Wall at the Artist & Craftsman Supply location in Mid-City bears a striking resemblance to the Dutch artist’s geometric, primary color-dominated style. It’s no surprise that an art supply retailer, one of the biggest in the city, would select this mural, which has since become one of LA’s most iconic walls. These days, however, it’s looking a tad changed (for the better, if you ask us), with two cat silhouettes bookending one of the yellow blocks.
Made in LA Wall
WHERE: 8025 Melrose Ave
This gray-on-gray stencil might be referring to the fact that Cisco Home’s furniture and home accessories are homegrown. Yet Angelenos also exploit this popular wall on Melrose to express their hometown pride. Though frankly, it isn’t just the locals who frequent this place—what better way to show off on social media that you’re in Los Angeles than with a photo of you in front of this mural?
California Dreaming Wall
WHERE: 3485 La Cienega Blvd
Though actually, the blue-and-pink, 78-foot wide wall at Chinese Laundry with the words “California Dreaming” printed on it in white might also do the trick. The brainchild of typography artist Ricardo Gonzalez, who was commissioned by the LA-based designer footwear brand, this mural is a stunning ode to the Golden State and an epic photo ending to your perfect California holiday.
The Love Wall
WHERE: 8549 Higuera Street
You cannot miss NYC-based illustrator Curtis Kulig’s “Love Wall” at the Smashbox Studios, if only for the fact that the silver-on-red mural is such an in-your-face creation in a largely industrial section of Culver City. Most, however, are drawn to it by its message summarized in a single word: love. Is it too naively optimistic? Perhaps. But we all could use a little more of it these days.
The Pink Wall
WHERE: 8221 Melrose Ave
Has Paul Smith LA’s Pink Wall become Melrose’s most famous attraction? Not just yet, though it has definitely reached celebrity-level status. This wall at the corner of Harper and graffiti-peppered Melrose might just be the city’s most Instagrammed wall. On a typical day, tourists wait in line for their turn to pose in front of it. The appeal? It’s a solid, surprisingly herculean pink wall. Think of all the photo possibilities.
WHERE: 1759 Glendale Blvd
Fans of the English street artist know that D*Face’s works may be found in several places in Los Angeles. This mural of a couple sharing a wretched kiss, which dominates the street-facing side of the Six Point Harness building, might be the most accessible, easily seen from a busy section of Glendale Boulevard. His work has always been thought-provoking, and this one’s no different. It even bears his signature wings, in case there was any doubt this is his.
WHERE: 601 Silver Lake Blvd
Doughnut fans won’t have to settle for doughnut-shaped pool floats and doughnut-themed screen wallpapers, after all. In Silverlake, Mom’s Donuts’ fried confectionery offerings is served alongside Chinese food to go. But their street art game is undeniably the focal point, with the shop’s colorful birds and donuts exterior. It looks so good it kinda makes you want to grab a donut or two.
Ode to Bohemia 2
WHERE: 6171 Century Blvd
Kim West fans were sad to see the Arts District’s “Ode to Bohemia” go as it was one of LA’s best walls. It’s ok though because the LA-based artist is back with a vengeance, bringing her poppy-freckled, rainbow-colored mural back to life in late September. Only this time, she took to the Westside on a glass and black brick building just a stone’s throw away from LAX. How does it compare to the original? It’s a little different, but it’s just as good.
WHERE: 12125 Venice Blvd
Here’s Culver City’s answer to the Pink Wall. Just across the street from the famous Geometric Wall is a lesser-known if equally Instagram-worthy neighbor. Bowlero’s brick façade is painted a solid cerulean blue, which is the bowling alley’s signature color. And it makes for an attractive (if fairly unknown) must stop for the wall-obsessed. As a bonus, you can go bowling after.