"The Original Money Tree at
611 Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles"
The replication of "The Money Tree" aka "The Money Mural" has brought an incredible artwork back to life. The original piece was installed back in 1953 in the lobby of the building at 611 Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles. The commission of the Money Mural was requested by Standard Federal Bank, the first and primary occupant in the building. The artist they hired to produce the mural was Margaret Bruton (1894-1983), one of three sisters who were part of the “Monterey Group” of artists.
Margaret was the eldest of the three Bruton sisters, California artists doing incredible and groundbreaking beautiful mosaics and murals from the 1930s through the 1950s. Back then women's creativity as artists was restricted and not readily accepted. Despite all odds the achievement for these sisters was and continues to be remarkable. At a time when women’s roles were quite different, Margaret’s family encouraged the sisters to pursue their passion in art. The three talented sisters became prominent artists who exhibited their work across the globe.
Some of the original work of the Bruton sisters remains on display to this date. Unfortunately, the original Money Mural at 611 Wilshire Blvd was unknowingly destroyed. A color photographic slide of the original mural in the Welton Beckett architectural drawings and photographs archive at the Getty Research Institute along with the contribution of others have been instrumental in this revival of the mural.
In January of 2021 the Money Tree was replicated by Jeanine Hattas Wilson, another extremely talented female muralist. For a short video of the replication process for this incredible piece of art, click here.
For more information on the Bruton sisters, you may follow this blog.
"Los Angeles Times article about the
original Money Tree, September 22, 1953"
"The Bruton Sisters;
Margaret Bruton (on right)"