"Villa Riviera Wrapped for Restoration"
oil on panel, 2009
24" x 18" (60.96cm x 45.72cm)
As the title reveals, this building won't be retired any time soon. It sits near the seashore and overlooks the southern end of the Long Beach Grand Prix Circuit. If what I've heard is true, it was formally a Hotel frequented by movie stars like John Wayne and is currently an apartment building.
So, while some of our physical history gets scraped clean to make room for the new, and some of it is left to be slowly digested by time, by our own doing or lack of I should add, some of it is allowed to remain and in fact, be pushed forward.
My view is looking south toward the Pacific Ocean just before high noon with the morning marine layer reluctantly retreating. The building uncovered stands like a monarch with it's crown-like copper top roof. But wrapped in scaffolding and it's cape-like black tarp it took on a completely different persona, gothic and ominous. This is what really caught my attention after having driven past it for years. I knew I would finally have to address it in a series of images, covered and perhaps now, uncovered.11
Click on image for larger view