Public Art | Spotlight

Take a summer walk to explore public art on campus

Cal State L.A. restores landmark tile mural by the late Guillermo Granizo

Looking for a free summer excursion? Visitors and students alike can explore the collection of public art gracing the campus grounds and buildings. A reflection of the creative and innovative programs offered at Cal State L.A., the array of artwork is mostly accessible to the public throughout the year.

Pictured: Olympic Fantasy mural.

Considered an icon for the University and a landmark on the east side of Los Angeles, the “Olympic Fantasy” mural by the late Guillermo “Bill” Granizo is the most visible artwork on campus. Glimmering in the summer sun, the mural was one of only two works of art commissioned by the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee in 1984. The mural, mounted on the west side of the Physical Education building, was installed in time for CSULA to host the 1984 Olympic Judo competition.

Recently restored to its original vibrancy to preserve and protect Granizo’s vision, the “Olympic Fantasy” is composed of 2,232 individually glazed and fired ceramic tiles. The entire work measures 93 feet by 24 feet and is reportedly “the largest tile mural ever created by a single artist working alone.”

For other public art on campus, refer to the interactive map below (click icon for image of each artwork). The campus community is encouraged to take a summer stroll around campus to admire each artistic expression in person.

Additionally, the University’s Fine Arts Gallery in the Fine Arts building showcases works by CSULA students and faculty from the Department of Art during the fall, winter and spring quarters. Each season, the Luckman Gallery on campus also exhibits works by international and local artists. Two masterpieces are currently on permanent display at the Luckman Theatre—“Por un lenguaje Universal” by Reyna Castaño and “Untitled” by Albert Contreras.

The CSULA Art department boasts that “the works of CSULA alumni and faculty have helped define the L.A. aesthetic for over four decades.” Cal State L.A. Art alums include Gronk (Glugio Nicondra), Frank Romero, Carlos Almaraz, Kent Twitchell, La Monte Westmoreland, Mitzi Valenzuela, George Yepes and more.