From cycling celebrations to protest marches to filming, street closures are a part of life in downtown L.A. But it's something altogether different this week for a section of Main Street from Arcadia Street to Cesar Chavez Avenue, where the road is being blocked to make room for a restoration effort involving one of the city's key pieces of public art, "América Tropical."
Part of an ongoing partnership between the city and the Getty, the only mural by Mexican painter David Alfaro Siqueiros that is still in its original location will be fitted for a protective canopy, starting today.
The process is to include using a crane to attach the canopy over the mural's 90-foot span along the south wall of the Italian Hall in Chinatown. Plans are for the street to be blocked off through Wednesday, until the crane is taken down.
Also part of the nearly $10-million project ($6 million of which was picked up by public funds) are a rooftop viewing platform and an interpretive center, which when completed are to include exhibits on Siqueiros as well as the making and restoration of "América Tropical." Following multiple bureaucratic and technical delays that have added up to the longest-running commitment on the part of the Getty Conservation Institute, the fully conserved mural is scheduled to open this fall.