Win Original Celebrity Portrait Drawing in Contest to Name the New Public Art Murals that will Replace Lost WPA Murals
In the 1930s and early 1940s, the U.S. Government’s Work Projects Administration, Federal Art Program (WPA/FAP) paid artists to paint murals in public buildings all across the US. Artist Helen Lundeberg was one of those muralist.
In the early 1940s Lundeberg was commissioned to create nine murals for Los Angeles County’s Patriotic Hall lobby. The number of murals the artist actually completed was reduced to three, when Congress put an end the WPA and eliminated arts funding in support World War II .
The three murals she ultimately completed were Preamble to the Constitution, which depicts several United States founding fathers clustered around the Constitution; Free Assembly, which illustrates a group of US citizens gathered in political discussion; and Free Ballot, which shows citizens voting. Each mural was painted in oil paint and it took the artist eleven days each to complete the three. Each mural measures approximately 12’ wide by 15’ high. Helen Lundeberg hand-painted them on site with the help of four assistants. The murals remained on site in the Patriotic Hall’s lobby for over thirty years.
In the early 1970s they were removed and subsequently lost. Despite extensive searches, no record of them has been found. If you see works of art which may be the lost Lundeberg murals, please contact the Civic Art Program at 213-202-5858 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Today, photorealist muralist Kent Twitchell is in the process of completing a series of three large scale murals for the newly renovated Patriotic Hall. Twitchell's new interior murals will honor the originals Helen Lundeberg painted during the Works Progress Administration and were then unfortunately lost.
Twitchell's murals will reflect the content of the Lundeberg murals painted in 1942 which depicted three Constitutional freedoms - The Preamble to the Constitution, Free Assembly and Free Ballot. Click here to see renderings of the Twitchell murals. The murals are commissioned under Los Angeles County's Civic Art Program, administered by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission. They are part of a capital project to renovate Bob Hope Patriotic Hall; under the County's civic art policy, one percent of project cost is set aside for the incorporation of civic art. Renovation is scheduled to be complete in fall 2012.Continued on the next page