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Traditionally, "public art" invokes the images of historic bronze statues of a soldier on horseback, or a large decorative fountain in a park or plaza setting. Today, public art can take a wide range of forms, sizes, and scales - and can be temporary or permanent. Whatever the form, public art instills meaning - a greater sense of identity and understanding of where we live, work, and visit - creating memorable experiences for all residents and visitors to Manhattan Beach.
Enjoy a virtual walk through the many artistic treasures found in the City of Manhattan Beach by viewing the Public Art Story Map. The goal of our Cultural Arts Commission’s “Art in Public Places” program is to offer a variety of artwork at different sites throughout the City. Discover various sculptures, mosaics, memorials and even a time capsule!
Abstract Water Works
Located at the Creative Arts Center
Artist Paul Betouliere, installed December 2002
In 2002, artist Paul Betouliere created this fountain made out of natural stones and a bronze sculpture centerpiece. It is located in the back patio area of the Manhattan Beach Art Center.
In 1993, artist Roberto Salas created this set of specialty railing designs and the compass and wording inlaid in the concrete floor at the Upper South Parking Lot near the Manhattan Beach Pier.
How Soon Hath Time...
Located on Joslyn Community Center
Artist: Gary Sweeney; installed 1992
In 1992, artist Gary Sweeny designed this installation with multiple panels of flag signals on the exterior (north) wall of the Joslyn Community Center. It reads, "How soon hath time, The subtle thief of youth, Stolen on his wing, My fortieth year".
Mankind's Struggle for Eternal Peace
Located at the Manhattan Beach Post Office on the corner of 15th Street and Valley Drive
Artist PHarold Roach, installed December 1982
In 1982, artist Harold Roach created this unique sculpture design. It is one of a series of identical sculptures donated to cities throughout California.
This memorial is dedicated to Manhattan Beach Police Officer Martin Ganz, who was killed in the line of duty on December 27, 1993. Designed by William Mikus, it features Officer Ganz's name, birth date and day of his death, topped with a casting of the helmet he wore as a traffic officer, his gloves, keys, sunglasses and badge.
MARTIN L. GANZ
Officer Martin Ganz was shot and killed while making a traffic stop. As he was outside of the patrol car the driver of the other car exited and started firing at him. Officer Ganz tried to take cover behind his vehicle but was shot numerous times. Officer Ganz's 12-year-old nephew was on a ride along with him and the suspect attempted to shoot at him, but his gun misfired and the boy was not harmed.
The suspect was arrested approximately eight months later in connection with another murder in Oregon. The suspect was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole for the Oregon murder. In December 1998 the suspect was sentenced to death for the murder of Officer Ganz.
On the 12th anniversary of Officer Ganz's murder, a section of the I-405, between Hawthorne Boulevard and Rosecrans Avenue, was renamed the Martin L. Ganz Memorial Highway.
Officer Ganz was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and had served with the Manhattan Beach Police Department for five years. He was survived by his fiancee.
- Daily Breeze article from December 26, 2018: 25 years later, Manhattan Beach police remember Martin Ganz, its only officer to be gunned down in the line of duty
- Martin Ganz Tribute website
Artist: Tolkin and Associates
Location: Metlox Plaza, Installed 2005
In 2005, artists from Tolkin and Associates created a fountain shaped as a one-of-a-kind replica of the cubistic dog miniature that was produced by Metlox Potteries on this site in the 19940's.
Metlox Plaza Fountain
Artist: Wade Graham
Location: Metlox Plaza; Installed 2005
In 2005, artist Wade Graham of Landscape Studio, LLC, created a fountain that is a centerpiece of the Metlox Plaza. Water spills over a mosaicked concrete wall built into the landscape.
In 1997, artist Paul Tzanetopolous created this cement tile design on the Sea Wall below, as well as the complimentary mosaic tile design on the Comfort Station building above.
Artist: C.J. Rench
Location: Polliwog Park
C.J. Rench is professional sculptor specializing in large-scale abstract designs and fabricating unique works of art, which reflect the values and artistic vision of his customers. Rench started as a self-taught industrial engineer and senior project designer in the sporting goods industry, where he was awarded multiple patents for his innovative concepts and designs. He began designing and fabricating metal sculpture full-time in 2004, and since then has installed over 30 large-scale public works throughout the US. Specializing in metal sculpture, all of the colorful pieces are hand painted with industrial marine epoxy and fabricated from mild steel, stainless steel or aluminum for durability and timeless quality. Incorporating glass, lighting and other design elements that create unique works for clients is a challenging and rewarding part of his work. Most of all, he wants his sculptures to invite, inspire, and connect people, regardless of age.
The Veterans Monument
Located in the Veterans Parkway at 15th Street
Artist: Ismael Medrano; installed: 1999
The Veteran's Memorial consists of two black granite triangles representing the shape of a folded American flag which is given to the families of veterans who have died. There are 50 stars on the Memorial (25 on each triangle) representing the 50 United States. The stars on the vertical triangle point upward, honoring veterans still living. The stars on the horizontal triangle face left in tribute to those who have fallen. At the monument's base is a bronze plaque containing the words below and a single gold star, symbolic of the star awarded to families of veterans killed in action. Behind the monument is a 25-foot flag pole which flies an American flag donated by the Knights of Columbus. Two service I.D. tags are placed at the base of the flag pole representing the traditional method of identifying all those who serve in the military. The two concrete benches angled toward the monument offer a place for rest, reflection and conversation. The plaque inscription reads: A Freedom Grove: Manhattan Beach honors all of the men and women who have served our country in the armed forces in times of war and peace to protect and preserve our freedom. November 11, 1998.
In 2000, artist Simon Ouwerkerk designed this bronze time capsule that was donated by Leadership Manhattan Beach (LMB). The LMB Class of 2000 collected memories from the millennium year. Memories to be shared with the community in the year 2025. Time capsules that are buried are often lost or misplaced. This time capsule won't be forgotten! It is encased in an art piece that thousands of joggers and dog walkers pass by on Veterans Parkway across from the Joslyn Community Center.