Andre Miripolsky is an artist of extraordinary abilities. As colorful a man as the exuberantly colorific art he creates, his signature style of pop imagery is bright, whimsical, energetic, and downright fun. With his unique pop-style he has created sculptures, graphics, branding, production design, sets and costumes. He has created several art costumes for Sir Elton John – including the “Piano Jacket.” His famous “Fear No Art” button is sold continuously at LACMA since 1985, and has been carried in over 300 museums.
An LA-centric artist, he works closely with city organizations, and serves on the boards of the LA Art Alliance, the Downtown Art Walk, and the Hollywood Arts Council. His LA-branding campaigns include the 2005 commission by the Central City Association of a large 3-D wall sculpture depicting the dramatic growth of the Downtown LA skyline.
Combined with his phrase “Viva LA” on billboards and buses throughout the city, Andre has become very much a part of the landscape of Los Angeles.
He has created a vibrantly adorned and decorated street angel (part of the Community of Angels public arts program) and a whimsical 7 ft x 150 ft’ mural for Superior Grocers, urging you to “Eat More Fruit and Veggies.”
Artist Andre Miripolsky looks like an artist. His once blue jeans are now covered in flecks of orange and green paint; a sign of his most recent work. These are the colors Andre uses to produce his signature murals, now as much a part of the City as any of its historical landmarks.
His biggest and probably most viewed mural was in 1992 on an MTV show called Rock and Jock Basketball Jam at Pauley Pavilion on UCLA’s campus. His first and only center-court floor mural was 6,000 square feet and lasted for only one game, one night and then buffed out. He seemed to understand that was just show business.
Miripolsky has been painting since he was eight years old and still juggles a full schedule that includes sitting on the Art Walk board and lots of charitable work. Where ever he goes he passes out buttons with his slogan “Fear No Art” a button inspired by a near death experience that geared his life towards charitable giving.
As an artist he has literally made his mark on buses, billboards, and murals throughout L.A. over the past 30 years and is now using his talents to inspire change in underserved areas of L.A. County.
Remember the SHARKS?
It’s shark week. Andre was commissioned to paint sharks all over L.A. County in 2013. The sharks Andre says, “represent the LA lifestyle.” They are cool, they are hip, they smoke cigars, they wear sun glasses and they have attitude. They are So L.A. The new murals depict the LA Sharks standing in or around historic landmarks for a series entitled “Shark in the City.”
Another commission Andre is particularly proud of is his 2012 mural in partnership with Wallis Annenberg Charter High School of Eat More Fruit & Veggies. Students along with staff helped him to design and paint the 7×150 feet mural at 74th and Compton Avenue. It was a pro bono piece that turned out to be as Miripolsky put it, “a charmed blessed thing to do . . . It was seamless.” These charismatic fruits and veggies are Miripolsky’s designs that will be replicated on 10-20 store-fronts throughout L.A., Orange, and Ventura counties.
Andre’s most recent passion has been working with Asian Elephant Foundation, an international charity, dedicated to protecting the majestic beasts. Dozens of artists will receive blank 4ft fiberglass Asian elephants to paint for a ten-week open-air exhibit that will culminate in Dana Point, CA on August 23rd. The proceeds will benefit the Foundation in preserving the Asian elephants’ habitat.
Being a muralist there is always the danger of graffiti art. To protect his pieces a protective gloss is painted over each mural. Surprisingly to some, many of his murals have gone untouched by these artistic vandals. This has a lot to do with earning respect through having talent and street credit.
“When I did the mural on Olive, people were freaked out about it,” he said. “And even after a month there was no graffiti on it. Not a mark. That lasted for almost eight months.”
Being on the Art Walk Board and a native Angeleno Andre is the first to express his gratitude for the artists and galleries that make Art Walk possible. Andre agrees with many that the Art Walk has done wonders to help rejuvenate DTLA and that it has definitely changed the view of DTLA for so many people.
Andre sees the future of Art Walk sustained by sponsorships and grants, and thanks all of its supporters.
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