Tag Archives: The Brig

Spot Check L.A. (Friday photo puzzle #3)

Where in L.A. is this?  Hint: campus.

Where in L.A. is this? Hint: campus.

Wow – between the Dodgers in the playoffs and the arrival  of G-D (Gustavo Dudamel, who made a splashy debut last night with the L.A. Phil at Walt Disney Concert Hall (broadcast live on FM 91.5, hope you got to hear it too!), it’s an exciting time to be an Angeleno.   This week’s puzzle pic was chosen in tribute to baseball fever – but it’s not located at Dodger Stadium.   I’m going to give a one-word hint:  campus.   I’ll be interested to see if anyone gets this.  If you know where it is, post your answer as a comment, and be as specific as possible.

As for last week’s puzzle, it was solved in a flash by Jeff, who located it at The Brig, a bar in Venice where it’s on the outside wall, and then again by runner-up Billy Mernit, who noted that it’s visible on Abbot Kinney Boulevard as you drive toward the beach. This distinctive mural went up in 1973, and has been repainted three times since.  Luckily I was able to locate the artist, well-known Southern California muralist Art Mortimer, who gives us the full scoop via e-mail:

Mural at The Brig, Venice, on Abbot Kinney Blvd.

Mural at The Brig, Venice, on Abbot Kinney Blvd.

“The two people in the mural are Babe and Betty Brandelli. When the mural was painted (1973), the place was called “Brandelli’s Brig.” Babe and Betty were the proprietors. Babe had been a Golden Gloves boxer in Venice in the ’30s, and the place was full of memorabilia of his boxing days. I’ve been told by the present owner that originally the place was built with a bar downstairs and a dance hall upstairs. When Babe took it over, he and Betty lived upstairs and there was no more dance hall.”

Background detail: Mortimer paints mural within mural.

Background detail: Mortimer paints mural within mural.

Art continues: “And yes, that’s me in the background, over Babe’s shoulder, painting the mural. My original concept was to create a monument to the process of painting a mural. But when I found the site and met Babe and Betty, I just HAD to put them in the mural– and the “painting” concept got pushed into the background. I was going to put a mural inside the mural inside the mural, but L.A. County Parks and Recreation (the mural’s sponsors) wanted their scaffolding back to loan to another artist for another mural. I don’t think there’s a name for that picture-within-a-picture sort of image.”

How interesting is that?  Thanks so much, Art, for the mural and the history.

Puzzle #2 Location Scout winner:  Jeff.   Runner-up:  Billy Mernit.  Thanks for playing, and please play again!

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