LeBron James Mural Artist: 'I've Had A Million Offers To Paint LeBron On Other Walls'
LOS ANGELES – Some – probably most – people would be bitter if their personal work was attacked to the extent it had to be fully destroyed. But not Jonas Never.
His mural of LeBron James surrounded by the words “The King of LA” went up last Thursday behind Baby Blues BBQ in Venice, California, and was soon after graffitied with the phrases “We don’t want you,” “LeFraud,” “No King,” and “3-6” (a jab at James’ career NBA Finals record).
“I’ve done 150-odd murals and not once has it ever been like this. I’ve definitely never had a bounty put on my wall like that guy did on Twitter with the first guy who vandalized it,” Never told Yahoo Sports. “And if that kind of stuff can happen, better it happen on a wall that I know I’m going to have opportunities to paint again, and better that it happened on a wall that only took a day and a half. If it had happened on a wall that took months, I would have been a lot more morose.”
While he credits the first incident to the Twitter user who offered money, Never doesn’t know who the second perpetrator was. But he has an idea.
“So I feel like if [LeBron’s] wife hadn’t posted the donut photo, if he’d gone to Blaze Pizza and then gone to the wall, it all might have played out differently. But that’s neither here nor there.”
Never paid for this particular mural out of pocket – he knew how much James’ signing would impact Los Angeles and wanted to welcome him accordingly. He even had to persuade restaurant manager Robb Aguirre, a Spurs fan, to let him do it. But after the second instance of vandalism, he figure he’d cut his losses.