Thursday, February 24, 2011

Traveling Thursdays: Griffith Park & James Dean

James Dean cries out “I’ve got the bullets!” after a young Sal Mineo is shot in “Rebel Without a Cause.” I did this painting back in the 90s, and although the publicity shot that I used as reference material lacks the heartbreaking hysteria of the real scene, I still used it. Memorably enough, I was able to hear one of the original cast members who played a gang member explain Dean’s motivation for this scene as he was looking at my painting in (of all places) Fairmount, Indiana (Dean’s hometown).

Recently, for the first time since before its refurbishment, I visited Griffith Observatory.

The James Dean bust is one of my favorite parts of the area to visit. Sculpted by the late Kenneth Kendall, I believe it is a masterpiece.

You can see the statue in the previous photos in the background of this still for “Rebel Without A Cause.”

Follow my Daveland updates on Twitter. To see more of my paintings, visit my online art gallery. For more Griffith Observatory photos, visit my regular website.


Connie Moreno said...

I've always loved that building. It is magnificent. Hey, you did that painting? WOW, its awesome!

TokyoMagic! said...

Love your painting, Dave. I need to get back up to the observatory....I haven't been up there since the nineties! I've always thought that sculpture with it's missing eyes was kind of haunting.

Major Pepperidge said...

The Observatory is one of my all-time favorite places in Los Angeles, a real treasure.

JG said...

OK, that does it, I have to go to the observatory.

Dave, you do beautiful work. The sculpture resembles the classic representations of Alexander The Great.

I can view these in the same way as the monuments to the Medici in their chapel. Masterpieces of art in service to the memories of scoundrels.

I guess I have some issues with the idolization of the Rebel Without A Clue, since I am hard pressed to find anything he did to deserve all the adulation other than have messy hair and a bad attitude. Sorry, I'm so cranky, but he if had driven slower, lived longer and grown wiser, I'd have more respect for him. Many people live long quiet lives giving back to their communities and pass away unnoticed, without monuments or quotations by French poets to their memories. Humbug.

Rant off.