Bumblebee, an anonymous street artist who grew up in Downey, completed the work Sunday evening, according to Mike Gavica, a co-owner of L.A. Buns, a burger shop in the same building on 2nd Street where the stencil was painted.
“There were like four or five people helping, so we couldn’t tell which one was him,” Gavica said.
Bumblebee has been around for years and his work is well-known in the street art community, according to Don Lamkin, an artist and Downey resident who knows Bumblebee.
Lamkin declined to discuss the painting at length.
“I usually like a little controversy, but I don’t want any controversy on this,” he said.
The local group HANDi recently completed a short film featuring the work of Bumblebee. The Downey Arts Coalition and the Epic Lounge are screening the film from 6 to 9 p.m. Aug. 19 at the Epic Lounge, 8239 2nd Street.
Lana Joy of the Downey Arts Coalition said Bumblebee is an internationally known artist whose work depicts children.
“His cause that’s kind of close to his heart is homelessness or poverty with children, so a lot of his work is kind of geared toward stirring thoughts about children,” she said.
Just a few people know who Bumblebee is, she said.
“He’s an anonymous street artist, so he has that incognito mystique,” Joy said.
The piece on 2nd Street shows a little girl cutting her hair with a pair of scissors.
Code enforcement officers were looking at the piece at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, but it wasn’t clear if anyone in the city planned to cover the art.
The work is on private property, and the business owners nearby said they liked the image.
- Caption: Downey Code Enforcement officers look at the Bumblebee image in Downtown Downey
Here’s a closer look: