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LA Street Artist Organizes Mandela 'Art Attack'

LOS ANGELES ( — A guerrilla street artist is paying tribute to Nelson Mandela by recruiting volunteers to place posters of the late South African leader around Los Angeles.

As KNX1070's Claudia Peschiutta reports, most of Robbie Conal's work is satirical. But the Mandela posters, he says, are celebratory.

"We are all incredibly grateful for Mandela's life, and we're not going to cry about it," he said.

On Friday night, Conal and volunteers, whom he calls art vandals, gathered for an "Art Attack", following news Mandela had passed away this week at the age of 95.

Mandela 'Art Attack'

The plan was to paste Mandela posters throughout Los Angeles.

"And you know, it's a little bit illegal so you want to be quick... But no running," he instructed a laughing crowd.

As Conal schooled the volunteers on "guerrilla etiquette," police showed up, telling gatherers it's illegal to put up posters on public property and on private property without the owner's permission.

Conal addressed the group again after speaking with a LAPD Sgt.

"If you feel a little ill today, take the posters home, get a good night's sleep, a little NyQuil, something... and there are many more nights in Los Angeles," he said.

LAPD Sgt Juan Guerra
LAPD Sgt. Juan Guerra talks to guerrilla street poster artist Robbie Conal, who gave him some of his Nelson Mandela posters. (credit: Claudia Peschiutta/KNX1070)

With cops standing by, hundreds of posters were distributed, along with brushes and buckets of glue, and supplies quickly ran out.

One woman said she believes volunteers won't give up on their mission to celebrate Mandela's memory.

"Since we got derailed tonight there's a high possibility that we might be doing a second coming," she said.

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