Paisley Owners Set Up New Spot on Grand Avenue ... and Paint Over a Mural by El Mac

Categories: Mural City, News
macmuralpaisleyviolin.jpg
photos by Claire Lawton
El Mac's mural on Universal Hair Salon in October, 2010 (above). The same space (and future location of Paisley Violin), September 2011.
Gina and Derrick Suarez shut the doors (and stripped the interior) of Paisley Violin, their house/cafe/art gallery, at the beginning of this month and announced they'll be reopening their operation across the street -- in the old Universal Hair Salon at 925 Grand Avenue.  

The couple took the iconic Paisley Violin sign and iron gates, which now rest in the new space's back lot, and this week, they gave the old spot an eggplant-purple paint job -- right over a mural by El Mac

El Mac, or Miles MacGregor is Phoenix native, an internationally commissioned artist, and arguably the best muralist in town painted one of his signature, ultra-realistic faces on Universal Hair Salon a few years ago, and even as pieces went up in the surrounding parking, the mural remained virtually untouched. 

El Mac's an iconic name in the local (and international) graffiti, mural, and art scene. His work was recently featured in Roger Gastman and Caleb Neeson's History of American Graffiti, and while he's typically travelling on art tours and mural gigs -- he painted a six-story building in Bristol last week -- he occasionally stops into Phoenix to visit family and friends. He even puts up a piece every once in a while. 

kaboommac_chocolatefactory300.jpg
photo by Claire Lawton
Luster Kaboom and El Mac on the Chocolate Factory.
​When we spoke to Mac in March, he said that it's rare for his large-scale murals to get buffed out or painted over. 

Local artists including Francisco Garcia and Luster Kaboom have painted around his work (while carefully taping it off), and his other local pieces on Circle 6 Gallery (formerly Pravus) on Roosevelt, The Chocolate Factory on Grand Avenue, and on the back of an apartment complex at 317 W. McDowell Road are still up. 

The Suarez duo couldn't be reached for comment. We stopped by their newly purple building this morning, but only found taped-off windows, an empty lot, and a hint of the original green on the locked side door. 

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25 comments
dulpurp66
dulpurp66

I just wonder why it matters.  If a giant mean-looking lady's face isn't part of the new establishment's aesthetic, paint over it!  Clearly the art was well-photographed by multiple people, so it will "live on".  Also, there's certainly more to this story, which is clearly slanted against these new owners who seem to have a not-so-rosy history with some folks in the area....

tceng
tceng

That was not a smart thing to do.  With El Mac going globally viral as an artist, a notable spot was lost.  Do you have a qulaity pic you'd like to share?   I can attribute the location - and the demise of the work.  And of course, give credit to the photographer. 

Snatch
Snatch

The owner is too busy drunk-driving to care! What an asshole!

Girl in Phx
Girl in Phx

This reminds me of the taco shop that painted over Banksy's stencil in San Diego :\

guest
guest

they knew. they were told.

Guest23
Guest23

I won't ever be a patron at this establisment. To destroy the El Mac portion of the wall was unnecessary and a marketing faux paux. Perhaps if they apologized and were very contrite for their stupidity, I amy reconsider but it would have to be very very heartfelt for making such a mistake. They could have very easily painted around it and the color scheme would still be relevant as the door is still in the previous green color. They also lost a great marketing tool as there are people that come to phoenix and tour around to see local street art and murals... since El Mac is well known, his fans would be drawn to their grand street location that many phoenicians and esp. out of towners avoid due to the areas past drug and crime reputation that has much improved but still is not completely cleaned up. The owners thumbed their noses at a local street artists and those that loved the mural.

smmf
smmf

i do recall at the other P.V. location that one of rose johnsons murals was also painted over, at the time it did not perhaps seem significant to the owners - a little research into the provenance and being in tune with how the community felt about this particular mural might have helped them with how they are perceived in the community. it would have been so much more interesting and better for their business. but you can't undo this one.i didn't really need another reason not to patronize this business but it sure puts a cherry on the reasons i don't.

Az
Az

typical Phoenix - they just copied what Beatrice did to the side of kooky crafts. cheerleaders, yet dumb dumbs.

maccandace
maccandace

I think that part of being an urban muralist is knowing your work may be tagged or over-painted but this one seems a shame to me, anyway. I've had some email correspondence with El Mac when I photographed several of his murals for my blog. I'm sure that the owners of Paisley Violin knew the history of this mural since they have been located across the street for years.

http://maccandace.wordpress.co...

Terrence Patrick
Terrence Patrick

I am sure Mac didn't blink an eye at the repainting of the building. The lettering was added as an after effect to the face mural as you can see in this photo ( http://media.legitify.com/blot... ). So, I would have made a stink about adding the lettering before I made mention about painting over it...

Jack Sakes
Jack Sakes

That's always been the trouble w/ those 2, they are very self involved. Looking out for #1 will help you survive, but it also means you're going to crush some worthwhile pleople/relationships too, wind up isolated when you DO need a hand.

lovable dog whistle
lovable dog whistle

 they could've easily kept the Mac piece and hired/supported a local artist to paint and integrate a Paisley Violin mural with it..but I guess it's their choice...actually for everyones information,this Piece from Mac had other murals with it when it was first painted,those were painted out and the Macs was left.

JDP
JDP

Why would a new restaurant/cafe want a giant mural advertising a hair salon on the side of their building? It makes their building look, well, like a hair salon. The mural on the Chocolate Factory is amazing -- the one on the hair salon looked like an advertisement for a hair salon. I would've painted over it too.

DwnTwn
DwnTwn

Hopefully they have him spray a new / bigger mural.

Guestking
Guestking

I wonder if they knew? It was cool pic. Too bad.

ExpertShot
ExpertShot

New owners, old building, hubris, destroyed art, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.  Phew!

Interst88
Interst88

I don't think anyone wonders why the lettering was painted over...I think it's more of the lovely lady's face. derp.

Sid
Sid

Dream on.

Ben68
Ben68

They could have researched it before painting over it, that was a way cool mural...

FF
FF

Mac only did the face mural, the letters where added by the salon owners, that looks bad. But they should keep the Mac mural, he is incredible. Sad

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