ICU Art - In Creative Unity

ICU Art is a Venice based art organization that has been curating the Venice Art Walls since the year 2000. ICU Art is a protector of the walls and helped to save the walls from destruction in 1999 when the Venice Pavilion structure was torn down as part of the Oceanfront Walk refurbishment. As an advocate for graffiti artist and public art in general, ICU Art has developed a broad-based network of artists and support personnel to work on issues and projects related to various forms of public art.

ICU Art - In Creative Unity

ICU Art has been presenting graffiti art exhibitions in the Los Angeles area since 1993. ICU Art produces cultural murals for public parks and community centers, as well as commercial murals for private companies. ICU Art does scenic design for films; music videos and theatrical productions with a focus on graffiti and spray can related work. ICU Art represents a large number of some of the most talented and well-known graffiti artists in Los Angeles. In addition to a large LA talent pool, ICU Art has artists available in many cities around the United States.

ICU Art views the non-profit work for the Venice Art Walls as a way to give back to the graffiti art community, and the people of Venice.

The Chrysalis Project

The Chrysalis Project is the fiscal receiver for the Venice Public Art Walls program. The Chrysalis Project is a a non-profit community based organization with 501(c)(3) status that is recognized by the State of California and the IRS. ICU Art has worked with the Chrysalis Project for over 5 years on youth arts projects such as the Venice Art Walls. You can get more information by visiting their website at www.chrysalisproject.org. For more information on making financial contributions to the Venice Art Walls through the Chrysalis Project, go to our Donate section.

The Chrysalis Project

The Chrysalis Project Mission

To initiate, coordinate, promote and/or administer programs, events, services and activities designed to meet the educational, social, physical, spiritual and recreational needs of people residing in underserved communities including juvenile camps and youth authorities in order to create safe, clean, healthy, violence free, life enhancing communities.

Venice Public Art Walls Pilot Program and Advisory Board

Working with the Department of Recreation and Parks and the office of City Council District 11, ICU Art is administering a Pilot Program at the Venice Art Walls starting on June 3rd, 2007. This six-month program was created in response to complaints from area residents and businesses that felt the Walls were bringing additional vandalism to the Venice area. Recognizing that the walls are a valuable cultural tourist attraction and art resource for Los Angeles, an Advisory Board was established to advise ICU Art on issue related to the Venice Art Walls.

ICU Art - In Creative Unity

Mike Bonin, Chief of Staff for Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, is Chair of the Advisory Board. Other board members represent the residents of Venice, the Department of Recreation and Parks, Venice Graffiti Committee of the Grass Roots Venice Neighborhood Council, the LAPD, The Department of Public Works, The Venice Arts Council and the City Attorney's Office.

The Pilot Program has been carefully crafted to mitigate any possible negative impacts the Art Walls may have on the surrounding community, while maintaining the art resource that the Walls represent.

Stash Maleski
Director, ICU Art - In Creative Unity

Stash founded ICU Art as an art production crew in 1992 with some friends and artists in Los Angeles as a means of producing visually stimulating, and socially conscious public artwork. Born in Los Angeles but raised in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, Stash returned to Los Angeles in 1987 to attend UCLA. In 1991, Stash moved to Venice and was impressed by the local support for artists in the bohemian beach enclave. Graduating with a BFA in Art History in 1992, Stash's goal was to curate exhibitions that were important both artistically and socially. Looking around the streets of Los Angeles and San Francisco, Stash was captivated by the high quality graffiti that he saw.

Through a series of introductions to key graffiti artists in the Los Angeles and San Francisco scenes, Stash developed a network of skilled spray can artists that wanted to show there works in venues other than just the streets. Over the years, ICU Art developed into a resource for graffiti artists to produce and distribute their artwork and ideas.

Stash Maleski - Director, ICU Art - In Creative Unity

Since 1993, ICU Art has produced groundbreaking graffiti art exhibitions. Landmark exhibitions include: "Word from the Underground: Art is A Crime" exhibition in 1993, "Top Illin" in 1995, "Wild Wild West" in 1997, "Abstract Reality" in 2001 and "Overpray" with Slick and Relic in 2002.

ICU Art is proud to have produced or participated in over eight distinct free youth arts programs. The focus of these programs has been to use graffiti art as a window into the world of fine art and technical art skills.

The strength of ICU Art has been the ability to cut across traditional lines of division within the graffiti art world to bring together the very best artists from diverse backgrounds.

This diversity has brought ICU Art success on a number of high profile projects. ICU Art has created scenic design and murals for films, "Burn Hollywood, Burn," "Anchorman," "Batman Returns," "Hollywood Homicide," and others. ICU Art has created scenic design and live painting for the Coachella Music and Arts Festival, Lollapolooza and the Sol Festival. Corporate and civic mural clients include General Motors, Disney, Warner Brothers, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs and the City of Beverly Hills.

Stash Maleski and ICU Art will continue to advocate for the rights of public artists and graffiti artists in general. Stash states, "My goal is to provide opportunities for artists to create great public art in such a way that it will add to our visual environment and be appreciated by the public."

To contact Stash Maleski please call (310) 309-7756 or e-mail him at stash@veniceartwalls.com.