Culture Monster

All the Arts, All the Time

« Previous Post | Culture Monster Home | Next Post »

Arrested Bell city official gets his street-art close-up in downtown L.A.

May 20, 2011 |  2:18 pm

Bell Times reporter Ruben Vives writes Friday in the L.A. Now blog about street-art posters that have begun appearing in downtown L.A. that depict disgraced Bell city administrator Robert Rizzo, who was arrested last year as part of a larger crackdown on corruption in the small Southern California city.

The posters feature artistic renderings of Rizzo's mug shot. Last year, The Times reported that Bell city officials were paying themselves exorbitant salaries and engaging in other forms of serious misconduct. The series of articles was instrumental in leading to the arrest and departure of many Bell officials, including then-Mayor Oscar Hernandez.

Vives and Times reporter Jeff Gottlieb received the Pulitzer Prize for public service this year for their work on the Bell story. 

The appearance of the Rizzo-themed street art coincides with the exhibition "Art in the Streets" at the Museum of Contemporary Art's Geffen Contemporary in Little Tokyo. The controversial show, running through August, spotlights the work of street and graffiti artists from around the world.

"Art in the Streets" is scheduled to travel to the Brooklyn Museum in 2012.


Artinthestreets MOCA's 'Art in the Streets' exhibition brings unwanted neighborhood effect: graffiti vandalism

Art review: 'Art in the Streets' at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA

Italian street artist Blu calls MOCA's removal of his mural censorship



 -- David Ng

Photo (top): Former Bell city administrator Robert Rizzo's mug shot is turned into street art in downtown Los Angeles. Credit: Ruben Vives / Los Angeles Times

Photo (bottom): "International Ice Cream Truck" by Mister Cartoon. Credit: Don Bartletti /Los Angeles Times