West Hollywood Mural Program

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The West Hollywood Mural Program is a City of West Hollywood program administered by the Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission as part of its Art on the Outside program.

For more information about our Commercial Business Mural Program click here.

Any business or commercial development interested in placing a mural on a wall, building, construction site or other location in West Hollywood, must use an artist approved by the City. Approved artists will be placed on the WEHO Muralist Roster as a resource for anyone seeking an artist for a mural project.

SCHEDULE FOR REVIEW OF APPLICATIONS

Proposed murals are reviewed by the Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission through its Art on the Outside Subcommittee as follows:

  • Invited Artist Mural Applications for City Property will be reviewed every month.
  • Commercial Business Mural Applications will be reviewed every month.
  • Muralist Roster Applications submitted in tandem with a Commercial Business Mural Application will be reviewed in tandem with the application.
  • All other Muralist Roster Applications will be reviewed twice a year (March - September).
  • Unsolicited Mural Applications from Artists for City Property will be reviewed twice a year through the Art on the Outside review of Temporary Art Project Proposals (January and July). 
  • Art on Construction Fence Applications from commercial properties will be reviewed within 10 business days of receipt of the application.

MURAL DEFINITION

For the purposes of the West Hollywood Mural Program, a mural is defined as a large-scale artwork, painting or mosaic, applied to or mounted directly to an exterior surface of a building, construction fence or other structure and that is visible from the public right-of-way. Its primary intent is to be artistic in nature, rather than purely information, creative signage or commercial signage.

The emphasis of the mural will be on “artistic expression” and must not espouse a particular religious, political or ideological viewpoint. Mural proposals shall not include designs that would be considered inappropriate and/or indecent by community standards. A mural shall not indicate or describe in narrative, the form of commercial activity that happens inside a building. All mural proposals containing any signage elements, as defined in the City of West Hollywood Municipal Code, will be redirected to submit an application through the Planning Division.   

MAINTENANCE

The City of West Hollywood does not take responsibility for maintenance and preservation of murals approved by the Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission, unless placed upon City property. A mural placed on a private structure becomes the physical property of the building/property owner. As such, the building/property owner is responsible for periodically monitoring the condition of the mural and facilitating its care and maintenance, assuming any costs associated with its maintenance, repair and/or removal. Murals not maintained properly may be subject to Code Compliance penalties and removal.

CRITERIA FOR APPROVAL

Approval is contingent upon fulfillment of the Mural Application. Artists must be registered on the WEHO Muralist Roster in order to qualify for a mural in the City of West Hollywood. The artwork will be reviewed according to the criteria outlined in the Art on the Outside Program Review and Approval Process.

See our FAQ's for answers to questions such as:

Where does the mural process begin?

What is the definition of a mural?

When is a mural no longer viable as an artwork?

LINKS TO Waiver of Artwork Placed Upon Private Property

LINK TO Zone Clearance Permit

Resources:

Artist’s Guide to the Visual Artists Rights Act (VARA)

The Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA) grants certain rights to artists. VARA was the first federal copyright legislation to grant protection to moral rights. Under VARA, works of art that meet certain requirements (including murals) afford their authors additional rights to the works, regardless of any subsequent physical ownership of the work itself, or regardless of who owns the copyright to the work. VARA also protects the artist from unauthorized secondary uses of the art such as the making of copies, t-shirts, postcards, posters, and other commercial goods. Click here for more information about VARA.

California Art Preservation Act (CAPA)

The California Art Preservation Act is a 1979 California law that provides legal protection for artists’ moral rights. Portions of the law overlap with the provision in the Visual Artists Rights Act, in which case the California law is preempted. CAPA provides artists protection from destruction or mutilation of a work of fine art (including murals) and provides artists the right to claim authorship and disavow modifications to their original artwork. Click here for more information about CAPA.

Mural Creation Best Practices

American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works - Preservation’s Rescue Public Murals (RPM) initiative has confronted the risks that community murals face by being located in outdoor, public spaces. Murals have been, and are an increasingly, in the United States, large and small, have mural programs or are actively commissioning murals. While working to ensure the protection and preservation of existing murals, RPM recognizes that many common issues that murals face could have been mitigated with careful planning and preparation. Click here for more information about Mural Creation Best Practices .

The City of West Hollywood is committed to assisting artists and interested business owners with the application requirements and process. If you have any questions, please contact Rebecca Ehemann, Public Art Coordinator, (323) 848-6846, rehemann@weho.org.