6 New Installations From A-List Artists Bring Star Power To SD’s Art Scene

In recent weeks, the ever-growing art portfolio of a dedicated supporter of public art, John Kilroy (CEO of Kilroy), has embraced the work of esteemed artists from around the globe. In fact, just this month, San Diego saw 6 new installations within Little Italy and the Del Mar/Carmel Valley neighborhoods.

The most notable of which includes a two-piece graffiti-style mural and glowing signboard by UK artist Ben Eine—who rose to international fame when President Barack Obama was gifted with one of Eine’s original works by the British Prime Minister. As Kilroy’s investment in San Diego continues to grow, with future commercial real estate projects throughout Downtown and North County, so too does Kilroy’s impressive public art program for San Diegans to experience and enjoy.

Check Out These 6 New Art Installations And Their Artists

BEN EINE

Title: “Hey” and “Ciao” at 2100 Kettner in Little Italy

Ben Eine brings the star power to 2100 Kettner’s multi-installation art program. A prolific street artist originating out of London’s underground graffiti scene, Eine rose to commercial fame alongside his pseudonymous cohort, Banksy. His global acclaim crystallized in 2010 when President Barack Obama was gifted with a Ben Eine original painting by British Prime Minister David Cameron during a ceremonial exchange of gifts.

Today, Eine’s letterform style is universally recognizable, and his work is held in prestigious collections around the world including the V&A (London) and MoMA (New York). His custom artwork at 2100 Kettner comprise a pair of bold installations: the first, a hand-painted “Hey” mural is a nod the laid-back Southern California lifestyle in Eine’s iconic New Circus typeface, and the other, a neon “Ciao” signboard pays homage to Little Italy’s cultural legacy.

JUN KANEKO

Title: An untitled garden sculpture at One Paseo

Japanese-born artist Jun Kaneko is widely regarded as one of the most influential ceramic sculpturist of modern time. Coining the monolithic dango (meaning “dumping” in Japanese) form, Kaneko pushes the boundaries of clay with his enormous hand-built ceramic sculptures and experimental glaze techniques, which can reach upwards of 8 feet tall.

Now at One Paseo, one of Kaneko’s free-standing, oblong sculptures can be spotted perched amid the property’s lush koi pond garden. The blue glaze used in the piece is a recipe Kaneko has been tinkering with for a decade, finally achieving the color and texture he has been after. The works are perfect in their simplistic form and impressive technical accomplishment.

Additional Installations at 2100 Kettner in Little Italy:

BUMBLEBEELOVESYOU

Title: “Chillin’ in San Diego”

Hawthorne Street’s new ink depicts a lounging youngster enjoying a slice of pizza. The pop-art-style mural is quintessential of Bumblebeelovesyou’s whimsical oeuvre, fixed in themes of childish innocence, freedom and joy.

BARKET KEZWER

Title: “Keep Going”

Toronto-based muralist, Barket Kezwer, was tapped to execute 2100 Kettner’s largest installation, which enfolds the property’s train-facing wall. Standing 26 feet tall by 80 feet wide, the stretch fabric mural reads “Keep Going” in kaleidoscopic colors.

PAUL WACKERS

Title: “To walk around in your mind awhile. Everything as it is and where it was meant to be.”

Figurative painter Paul Wackers was chosen for 2100’s Kettner staircase mural—an indoor/outdoor installation, ascending multiple floors. Concentrating on still-life art, Wacker’s slightly abstract, highly engaging flair offers a glimpse into a parallel reality.

Returning in November

Come November 1st, a pop-up public art program will return to illuminate San Diego’s downtown skyline, intertwine art and architecture, and engage community.

What began in 2020 to inspire hope during a time of pandemic darkness, “The Kilroy Stars” were commissioned within various west coast cities. San Diego’s Kilroy Star will return for a second season, and may be seen from miles away once it is perched atop  2100 Kettner in Little Italy.

Using light to transcend language, the Star spans 20 feet in diameter and is outfitted with 30,000+ individually programmable LED bulbs. It is designed and built by an Oakland-based creative co-op widely recognized for their installations at Burning Man (Engineered Artworks) and will remain lit 24-hours a day, from November 1, 2021 – March 15, 2022.

We love this investment in making San Diego even more beautiful! Go check them out!

See you there, San Diego!

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