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Beverly Hills News

Historic Ceremony For Millard Sheets Mosaic
Posted by Amanda Macke on Oct 30, 2013 - 12:07:42 PM

BEVERLY HILLS—The mosaic “El Camino Real” by Millard Sheets will be formally dedicated as a historical landmark at a public celebration on Saturday, November 2 at the Civic Center.

 

The City of Beverly Hills announced in a press release that City Council designated the mosaic as a historic landmark during their last October meeting. City Spokeswoman Therese Kosterman told the Canyon News the mosaic is the City’s fifteenth historic landmark.


Beverly_Wilshire_mosaic_installed.jpg
The mosaic "El Camino Real" by Millard Sheets.

 

The 15-feet by 31-feet art piece was installed above the Civic Center parking structure earlier this year after being in storage for 26 years. The mosaic, named after the historic 600-mile road paved by Spanish missionaries along the California coast, was first featured at the entrance of the Beverly Wilshire Hotel until it was removed and presented as a gift to the City in 1987.

 

Wanting to use the Public Art Funds available to the City, the Fine Art Commission finally burrowed the mosaic out of storage and found it a home at the Civic Center, Kosterman said.

 

“The Fine Art Commission is thrilled that this superb piece of art is now being seen and appreciated by hundreds of people each day,” Fine Art Commission Chair Fiona Chalom said in a statement.

 

The mosaic depicts an early California scene of two women and a young girl welcoming a couple riding horses in a forest scene. Millard Sheets (1907-1989) was an influential California artist known for incorporating artwork into the architectural design of buildings. In the 1950s, he was commissioned to design and create artwork for dozens of commercial buildings in Los Angeles.

 

Over the years, JP Morgan Chase has acquired many office buildings designed by Sheets and has been successful at preserving their mosaics. Chase, who is the sponsor of the event, was instrumental in helping the City restore and install “El Camino Real” to the Civic Center.

 

“Sheets was an influential artist, designer and educator who made an important contribution to the postwar Southern California landscape with mid-century designs that integrated art and architecture,” said JP Morgan managing director Leslie Lassiter. “As a Beverly Hills resident and graduate of Scripps College—where Sheets taught—I am please to recognize his great achievement,” she added.

 

The dedication ceremony is free for the public to attend and will include mariachi music and refreshments. The public ceremony begins at 2 p.m. on November 2 in front of the Library located at 444 N. Rexford Drive. Attendees are asked to use the Civic Center entrance to the parking structure.



 

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