LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) —Mayor Eric Garcetti has intervened to save a downtown mural gifted to the city by rock group Foster the People.
The 125-by-150-foot artwork, which serves as the cover art for the group’s new “Supermodel” album, was scheduled to be painted over Monday, six months after its unveiling on the side of a historic building in the 500 block of South Los Angeles Street.
Supporters of the mural sent a petition to the city and were delighted when the mayor stepped in at the last minute.
“The owner said that there was no permit and was looking to paint that out. But this is a beautiful piece of art,” Garcetti told CBS2.
Hundreds of fans gathered Monday in support of the artwork after Foster the People frontman Mark Foster posted a message online revealing plans for its removal.
A tweet posted on the group’s verified Twitter account alerted fans to the change of plans.
“We just received a call from the mayor’s office. @EricGarcetti saw your petition and decided against repainting the wall. The Mural Stays!” the message read.
“They put a lot of hours and heart into it, so I’m glad it’s here,” supporter George Lamoreux said.
There will be other hurdles, however.
A new building will be constructed adjacent to the work, where a public parking lot now sits, and the owners wonder if the mural will threaten certain tax credits they receive because their building is on the National Register of Historic Places.
“We’ve been working with property owner … to see if, in fact, it could remain,” said Tanner Blackman, Planning Director at the office of L.A. City Council Member Jose Huizar.
Owners of the building as well as representatives from the city and the Department of Cultural Affairs plan to meet to determine long-term plans for the artwork.