The South Pasadena Arts Council (SPARC) is asking the public for help in raising funds for the restoration of the Kobe Bryant mural, extensively defaced by graffiti on November 5, 2023, at its location on the northeast corner of Mission Street and Diamond Avenue in South Pasadena. The 15x15-foot mural, listed as #279 on the KobeMurals.Com map, was unveiled in 2021 in tribute to the legendary Laker. It was painted by world-renowned muralist Jonas Never, based on the last photo taken of Kobe in a Lakers uniform following his final game in 2016 by NBA Hall of Fame photographer and SPARC board member Andrew D. Bernstein.
SPARC’s goal is to raise $3000, the estimated cost of reimbursement to the artist for his generous, hand-painted restoration of the mural and the application of a new, high-tech anti-graffiti coating. “Those who donate $100 or more until we reach that goal,” said SPARC Board President Sandra Kitto, “will receive a copy of the critically acclaimed book, The Mamba Mentality: How I Play—a collaboration between Bryant and Bernstein, the Laker’s official photographer, who documented Bryant’s 20-year career.”
“SPARC was thrilled to have had the opportunity to bring such an amazing mural honoring Kobe Bryant to our community,” Kitto said. “Our mission, ‘Igniting Creativity, Illuminating the Arts,’ is reflected in this project, intended not only for our community but for those outside our city to enjoy. We are dedicated to maintaining this meaningful mural and supporting its gifted artist, and we deeply appreciate any donation amount that will help us achieve that.”