What you are looking at above is a piece by Los Angeles graffiti artist Saber. But it’s not just any piece, it’s a massive an insanely famous piece. In fact, it holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for being the largest “wild style” piece in the world. Painted in 1997, it took 35 nights and over 125 gallons of latex paint to create. It’s visible on Google Maps and in the world of well know graffiti pieces this is always one of the first mentioned. And now it’s gone.
The piece used to be located on a stretch of the LA Rive in the southeast corner of downtown, arguably a boring, plain, even ugly and run down part of the city. The piece was almost impossible to see without actually climbing into the river bed (I know, I went there specifically to see it a few years ago) and was like a bright, colorful hidden treasure in a bleak and gray part of town. And suddenly for unexplained reasons someone in the city felt it was a justifiable expense (in this economy!) to pay city workers to destroy it. As shocking as this is, it’s not the first time world renowned public works of art in LA have been destroyed with no explanation. You see, this is why we can’t have anything nice.