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Pride on the Promenade to feature piano painting with celebrated artist Andre Miripolsky

This Saturday, June 22, during the Santa Monica Pride on the Promenade celebrations celebrated artist Andre Miripolsky will be painting full-size pianos with children from the Santa Monica YMCA in front of the Santa Monica Art Museum on the 1200 block of the Third Street Promenade from 3–5pm.

Miripolsky is the co-founder of Viva LA, an organization that celebrates and promotes the power of creative collaboration in the city of Los Angeles. His career began with the design of Elton John’s piano jacket for the 1980 Live in Central Park free concert that drew a crowd of over 400,000. Miripolsky’s pop art-inspired, street style of painting has featured on the cover of national magazines, album covers, numerous billboard displays and even a special edition Barbie. He also painted the backdrops for the Tonight Show when it was hosted by Jay Leno.

“I like Andre’s art because I can see his life in Los Angeles through his eyes. It’s about how he sees the community and it’s bright, colorful, vibrant and filled with joy. There are elements of pain and struggle in his work but it’s captured in such an incredibly vibrant way,” said Jeremy Ferguson, Placemaking Director for Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. (DTSM).

Ferguson stresses that despite Miripolsky’s art very much being an international brand, at its heart lies a love for both Los Angeles and the people who inhabit this sunny city, from long-time residents, to expats, recent arrivals and anyone who’s just visiting or passing through.

Christian Mittman, the co-founder of Viva LA, will also be taking part, coordinating activities such as live screen-printing Pride flags and even organizing photo opportunities in front of a 10ft tall original Miripolsky Santa Monica “cityrama” piece commissioned by Ferguson for DTSM.

Two pianos will be on hand to be imaginatively enhanced. One was donated by an anonymous community member, which will be painted by Miripolsky and the other was donated by the Santa Monica and Malibu Unified School District, specifically the Santa Monica Alternative School House. This one will be painted by children from the YMCA.

Moreover, DTSM has partnered with Viva LA to participate in the annual Select LA Investment Summit where international financial folk will get a chance to see the potential of Santa Monica as a premier destination for both tourists and business opportunists.

“There is power in branding and with the growing adoption of this unified Viva LA message across the county, we will be able to collectively highlight the power of LA County’s creative culture to attract and retain a diverse and thriving community here in Santa Monica,” said Ferguson.

He says that partnering with Viva LA demonstrates community building by promoting local culture and supporting economic growth through collaborations with local businesses and artists. It fosters community engagement and inclusivity by facilitating events, educational opportunities, and outreach programs that address social issues and encourage civic participation. These efforts build long-term relationships, enhance the quality of life, and contribute to the overall development and unity of the community.

If the thought of hanging with Miripolsky has just whet your appetite for art and now you’re craving more, you should absolutely check out Art in the Alleyways. This is a self-guided art crawl through the streets of Santa Monica that can be undertaken at your leisure, at any time simply by following the @ArtInTheAlleyways feed on Instagram. After hearing feedback from locals wanting something art-related free and fun to do with their families, Santa Monica creative Mandy Zelinka, came up with the idea.

“Santa Monica is so active I wanted to create a beautiful experience for people coming off the beach into town, for you to take your sis when she comes to visit, or if you are staying downtown by foot or wheels,” she told the Daily Press, adding “I think this Instagram feed is a great start.”

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