Across the street from the Hillsboro Village dragon mural is a whole cast of animals, thirty one to be exact. No, I didn’t count them, the artists did. This is another of the many Eastside Murals works around town. The playful animals fit the location well, as the mural sits on the side of Arcade, a children’s store that sells clothes and toys aimed primarily at the under-six set.
In contrast to giant, fleshed-out dragon across the street, the Arcade animals are much more simple, built out of abstract digital lines and a poppy but limited color palette. It doesn’t look like anything else Eastside has done, but besides having a certain preschool aesthetic, its fits the style of the company that designed the mural, Fuzzco. (You can get a better idea of their work from their Instagram page.) They are a branding company with offices in Charleston, SC and Seattle, WA. This is hardly the only example of local artists being hired to execute a design by an out-of-town firm. Indeed, on the other side of 21st Avenue is another mural by Eastside that was designed by Donald Robertson, a New York-based artist who has recently moved to Santa Barbara.
The mural went up in the summer of 2019 when Arcade opened in this location. Genie Lockwood, the owner, has noted that “the magical and mysterious childhood world” was an inspiration for the store, and the animals seem designed with that spirit. The mural is also practical. The ruler attached to the tall giraffe on the right of the mural (see below) is intended to be used as a growth chart.
Located at 1721 21st Avenue South, at the corner with Belcourt Avenue. It’s right next to Belcourt Theatre. This is Hillsboro Village, so lots of parking, very little of it free.