Monday, March 22, 2010

Forest Lawn Likes Mosaics

In fact, Forest Lawn boasts "the world's largest historical mosaic" in Hollywood Hills, the "Birth Of Liberty" mosaic. (Which begs the question: are there larger mosaics with other themes? Like the world's largest animal mosaics? World's largest impressionistic mosaics?)

Well, I digress. Let's leave the Hollywood Forest Lawn for another day. Today I crossed the Vincent Thomas Bridge into Long Beach and the Forest Lawn on San Antonio Drive--a relatively small cemetery. It's got an outdoor mosaic too: a replica of Raphael's Vatican fresco, The Disputation of the Holy Sacrament. Only for some reason, Forest Lawn calls its thirty-two-foot high version of the fresco Paradise. (Why change the name? Did they run potential titles by a focus group?)

The original was painted in 1509-1510 according to Wikipedia; the replica was installed in 1981--as you can see from this close up of the lower right corner.

Hopefully clicking on the pictures will bring a larger version up to your screen.

There's one more picture of the cemetery I want to share, just because I thought it was odd and pretty. A rectangular court yard leads up to the mosaic, and it's largely symmetrical--benches and statues on each side, etc. But the hedges have been trimmed in unusual ways, with no attempt to match left and right hedges. The effect is rather art nouveau and attractive, IMHO.

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