4 November 2015
Ben Eine, the loveable graffiti vandal who became David Cameron’s favourite street artist, has been at the centre of a debate with the Laguna Beach Arts Commission in California over his latest epic mural.
The huge piece that reads ‘Charming’ was painted by Eine in his most popular ‘Circus’ font back in summer. It took 72 shades of spray paint and a 20-year protective coating to complete the masterpiece on the side of a three-story building. The piece is situated overlooking the idyllic seaside resort known for it’s bohemian artistic communities.
The council’s main gripe wasn’t with the mural itself, which was described by one of the commissioners as “absolutely beautiful”, but the fact that Eine hadn’t obtained a permit to create it. It was put to a vote whether ‘Charming’ should remain in place, with a 5-1 majority voting in favour.
Adam Casper who represented Eine in front of the council explained: "The piece transforms a white, faded wall into colour”. Adding the reason why the artist didn’t seek permission as, "It would take two to three years to get through the Design Review Board. This was a gift, a present to Laguna Beach, and self-financed."
Coming from a graffiti background where he made his name painting illegally on the side of trains, we are pretty sure Eine isn’t used to following the bureaucracy and strict procedures of US councils when it comes to making work. But we are glad they saw sense and let the mural remain in place.
From one Bohemian seaside town to another... Here in our Brighton gallery as part of our rare prints retrospective we have Eine’s incredible latest edition ‘Revolution’ in peach colour way. The print was highly sought after on its release last year, selling out completely in a matter of hours. If you want to spark the revolution we suggest you move quickly as this one won’t be around for long!