WEST HOLLYWOOD—The city of West Hollywood unveiled 29 new holiday pole banners featuring artwork by artists from the area.

The banners can be seen from Santa Monica Boulevard, San Vicente Boulevard, and Melrose Avenue. This year’s art will also be featured in city’s annual end of year Winter/ Holiday card, and social media promotions. 

One of the artists featured this year is Sophie Morro, who is a graphic designer based in Los Angeles, California.  Morro spoke with Canyon News in an interview and explained her inspiration for her artwork this year. “My inspiration was the life and culture of West Hollywood! As research, I drove around the area, stopping to take notes and make sketches of the many vignettes I observed. I knew I wanted to incorporate the diversity of the community, WeHo’s dog culture and iconic buildings, as well as the area’s sense of fun and liveliness.”

Morro explained that both her art and design work often draw on color, wonder and a feeling of otherworldliness. “I’m also very inspired by the city of Los Angeles itself, which ends up finding its way into my work. I am starting a new painting series that is going to explore themes of family, relationships and personal experiences, through an inquiring and ethereal lens that suggests the serendipity of it all,” she said. “It’s exciting, these banners are my first public pieces in Los Angeles. It’s cool to be a part of the landscape of the city and see them while driving!”

Morro shared that her experience with the art scene in West Hollywood was a truly fantastic experience and that she looks forward to future projects.  

The West Hollywood Arts Division sought artists to submit their work back in April. Artists had until May 2022 to issue their pieces to the Performing Arts and Cultural Affairs Subcommittee. Artists had to be residents of California in order to qualify. Artists who reside within West Hollywood, artists of color, women, artists with disabilities, and LGBTQIA+ artists were encouraged to apply.

The artists who applied will remain eligible to be selected as semi-finalists for 3 calendar years without needing to reapply.

Michael Che, who is the city’s Art’s Coordinator, spoke with Canyon News in an interview. He explained that many of the images featured on this year’s banners show off West Hollywood’s most notable landmarks. Some of the themes incorporated in this year’s artwork are an art deco style building that represents the famous Sunset Tower and a design that was inspired by the new neon-sign diver signs of the new West Hollywood aquatic center. 

The city has been hanging these holiday banners for about five to six years. Each year the city hangs the old banners alongside new banners alternating on poles on the streets.