Punk rock, lifeguards and surfing have been some of the historical subjects touched upon in the Hermosa Beach Murals Project, which will next focus on the city's counterculture roots for its ninth mural.
Iconic venues such as Insomniac, Either/Or Bookstore and the still flourishing Lighthouse Cafe, represent what was viewed as the bohemian or counterculture lifestyle in the late 1950s and 1960s, according to Mural project boardmember George Schmeltzer.
“All three of those places are so important to Hermosa's history and we want to remind people of that history and also to encourage them with our murals to check it out, particularly Either/Or and Insomniac,” Schmeltzer said. “It takes a little digging to find out what they were in the day.”
The Insomniac, open from 1958 to 1965, was primarily a coffee shop, but was also a venue for poetry reading and live music.
Either/Or Bookstore started in Manhattan Beach and then moved to Hermosa where it was a fixture on Pier Avenue from 1966 to 1998. The Lighthouse has been hosting live jazz, including legends like Miles Davis and Chet Baker, since 1940.
Schmeltzer said after their board meeting on April, where they will finalize the mural's theme, an request for proposals will go out for artists to capture the city's counterculture roots in the mural, which is expected to be unveiled in October.
The mural will be painted on the west facing wall of Waterman's restaurant.
“We just want the best piece of art we can find,” Schmeltzer said.
Founded by Chuck Sheldon in 2009, the Hermosa Beach Murals Project's goal is to fund 10 murals in 10 years.
For more information, visit hermosamurals.org.