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Street artists take credit for swimming mermaid on freeway


Every day on the 10 freeway, Angelenos behold a sight that makes them wish they were under the sea instead of stuck in LA traffic.

Searching for street art anywhere is an entertaining pastime, especially if you live in or have a chance to visit the City of Los Angeles.

Recently, a sculpture of a swimming mermaid was attached to a wall facing the 10 (Santa Monica) freeway in Los Angeles. At first, it was unknown who was responsible for the active, aquatic marvel. But the guerilla street artists nabbed credit soon after through a post on Instagram.


The LA Times informs art-lovers that the mermaid sculpture “has no official title, [but it] turns out to be the work of a street art collective known as Bohemia Incorporated” (LA Times); members remain anonymous because street art, if caught, is considered vandalism.

Caltrans, (California Department of Transportation), usually buffs and paints over street art or graffiti on a regular basis. But in the case of the unnamed mermaid, Caltrans elected to let it stay. The government department even added tags themselves next to the sculpture identifying Bohemia Incorporated as the group responsible for the free public art with the hashtag #BINC, the group’s shortened identity.

Only in California would a government department celebrate unsolicited street art! Bohemia Incorporated deeply appreciated the acknowledgement from Caltrans. One member, while requesting to remain anonymous, even went on record saying “the mermaid is always left untouched. We are grateful to them for that”.

So why a mermaid?

Bohemia Incorporated didn’t seem to have a clear answer as to what caused the inspiration for their deep sea goddess. They revealed that “We used a lot of scraps for that one, and sometimes you look at a scrap and that inspires the image”.

Whether it really was simply looking at scraps or they’re keeping the secret of their inspiration hidden, Angelenos across the city appreciate Bohemia Incorporated for making their daily commute a little brighter.

Monica Sanchez