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Encinitas Erases Monster Art

By Alison St John


May 30, 2011


The city of Encinitas speedily erased a painting that appeared on a bridge over the San Elijo lagoon. The city wants to prevent graffiti from springing up in the wake of a surfing Madonna mosaic that appeared mysteriously last month.


There was no sign on Friday of a large painting of a monster, which appeared in a photo in the North County Times as a colorful image filling a smooth concrete wall below Highway 101 near Cardiff state beach.


The city is already grappling with what to do about another piece of unsolicited public art that appeared overnight under a bridge off Encinitas Boulevard. In that case, public support has been strong to preserve the colored glass mosaic of a surfing Madonna.


Encinitas City Council has already spent a couple of thousand dollars on a consultant to advise how to remove the mosaic, which is attached to the concrete with strong glue.


Several nearby businesses say they would like to have it, and a local art store is selling T-shirts to raise money for the move.


Small pieces of the Madonna mosaic have already begun to disappear, and one observer who came to take photos said he hoped the city would take steps to preserve it.


The monster on the San Elijo lagoon bridge disappeared so fast most locals did not even get a glimpse of it.


Paul Howard, who lives a block from Cardiff state beach, said he never saw the monster painting, but he suspected it might be connected to the Kraken Bar in restaurant row.


“It’s disappeared – the kraken under the bridge,” he said, “but we still have the bar. And rumor has it there’s still trolls under the bridge. If the painting was a sea monster it could well have been the kraken.”

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