Mural draws answers to ‘color question’
Eads Avenue wall transformed
Artist Roy McMakin stands in front of his uncompleted mural on Eads Avenue.
By Will Parson
Roughly 1,000 visitors contributed to La Jolla’s latest mural on Saturday, answering the question, “What’s your favorite color?” for Seattle artist and UCSD graduate Roy McMakin.
The interactive mural, a colorful grid at 7596 Eads Avenue determined by people’s color choices, was set to be unveiled this week.
The scene on Eads stayed lively despite light rain. While painters worked underneath a large tarp — where they continued their work early in the week — organizers ushered visitors to a large selection of color choices. Overall, people chose their colors faster than the painters could execute them, but they could see on a chart where their colored square would appear on the final mural.
Organizers worked to bring in passersby, who often took the time to belabor the color question for several minutes before arriving at a favorite. Several iPod Shuffles were raffled off throughout the day, and there were enough jelly beans on hand that children did not have to choose just one color of the sugary treat.
The very first square of color belonged to Febbie Moore, who arrived at 8:30 a.m. to get her prime spot on the upper left-hand side of the mural.
“I think it’s going to be absolutely gorgeous, especially when you’re walking down the sidewalk and coming up on it,” Moore said. She chose a shade of red for the mural.
McMakin was on-hand during the event to share the experience with visitors and encourage participation.
“It just means a lot to people. I think the fact that we had so many people turn out and participate and not do it as kind of a joke but care and feel that it’s about something. I think it’s a whole story,” McMakin said. “The two interesting things are the community thing — that these people showed up, that they participated, that they cared — and that the thing will have a quality to it that will be determined by this.”
On Monday he also said that the “earnestness” with what people chose their colors was something he hadn’t expected, adding that he was excited by the turnout and the response to the project.
Matt Browar, chair of the arts committee of La Jolla Community Foundation, was also pleased.
“It was hugely successful with families, parents, everybody showing up and hanging out together and talking about the artist and what they were doing,” he said. He gave special thanks to the Kassel family trust, which owns the building; the Jurist family, who worked the tables for eight hours and took the color numbers and handed out raffle tickets, and the owners of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, the neighboring business which allowed its parking lot to be used and helped set up.
Trudy Armstrong, director of regional outreach for the San Diego Foundation which is a partner of the La Jolla Community Foundation, said La Jolla High students turned out in large numbers to support the event and helped hand out fliers.
Browar said Anya Gallecio, a UCSD professor in the visual arts department, and a venue — likely next to Rubio’s restaurant on Fay Avenue where it says dentist on the wall — have been selected for the next mural.
“She is one of the leading sculptors in the world,” noted Browar. “Her mural will be installed probably in late January or early February.”
Staff writer Dave Schwab contributed to this report.
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