Today’s storefront art post is another iffy subject, in that the art doesn’t depict anything the store sells and was also created with the intention of the finished piece being considered “art,” or at least an “artistic mural.” Normally those two things are disqualifiers in my world of storefront art.
Nevertheless, I’d like to turn my spotlight on the Sunset Plaza Trader Joe’s elevator murals because they do fulfill the most important requirement I have for storefront art: unintended profundity.
Now, I’m not really sure what the portraits of nearly unrecognizable film and music celebrities actually say, but they sure say something.
Take this one.
Is it saying, “Is Paul Newman merely a chin dimple?” Or “Do you remember if Paul Newman even has a chin dimple?” Or “Is Paul Newman with a chin dimple Kirk Douglas?”? I’m not sure.
Similarly, “Is Prince Prince even if he doesn’t look like Prince, if he simply has Prince-like facial hair and is framed in a large pink guitar pick?”
And then we come to Marilyn Monroe.
I did not photograph this at an angle, by the way. Please note that half of the face is rendered from one perspective, and half is rendered from a very different angle. Either the artist had a stroke mid-way through this one, or the artist is a flounder with eyes on either side of his head.
Step along folks. We have more to see. We have Morrissey.
Morrissey. I am fascinated that I know this is Morrissey and not Elvis or Ricky Nelson or Fabian or Frankie Avalon. What is the essential Morrissey-ness in this portrait that makes it definitively him?
And finally, I come to this one.
Who is she? She is rendered like a celebrity, so she must be a celebrity. Lauren Bacall. Judy Garland. Patricia Neal?
I have absolutely no idea, but if I were a maitre d’ at a restaurant and she came in, I would give this woman a good table. Because she looks important, she is important. There’s something deep about that, isn’t there? Phew. I gotta sit down for a minute.
Now, where’s that Two Buck Chuck?