A little over a month ago, we ran a story about how two local homeless guys were responsible for all the rock art along the bushy median between the lanes of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard up to the intersection with Nimitz near the freeway.
It was a short story about how two Local homeless guys, Corey and Greg, had what they considered “Rock Art,” with rows of stones piled on each other forming small pillars of rock. This type of rock art has been gaining popularity – and one can see piles such as what Corey and Greg have done at the shore, along the San Diego River.
Then, just days after our story appeared – there was that horrible period beginning on July 3rd of the serial killer preying on homeless men – including one killed in Ocean Beach. In a way, it was a relief seeing those rocks – almost a monument to the homeless.
Now, the rock art has been dismantled – all of it – and the rocks and stones currently line the thick bushes within the median. Who would have done that? The police? Other homeless? The 2 artists themselves to begin again?
We reported then:
There’s these two guys – Corey and Greg – both homeless – who are making Ocean Beach rock with their rock art.
You can see it all along the Sunset Cliffs Boulevard entryway into and out of OB. And Corey and Greg have been doing this for the past eight months – they told me. They work everyday, they say, 7 days a week, on their art.
Greg – the self-admitted artist of the two – figures they have completed up to a quarter of a mile of their installations. Corey agreed that it takes a lot of time just to assemble one pile.
I also added:
What about the cops, what do they say? I asked them.
The police see it all as art – and because it is art, the officers won’t disturb it nor allow anyone else to disturb the art.
I had asked them this, as I had recalled a similar compilation of rockart over along the San Diego River next to OB that was reported in the San Diego Reader. The day after the Reader came out with the story, down went the rocks – as one officer was ordered to dismantle them by his superior – who had read the article.
Why do they do it? I asked Corey and Greg. Without hesitation, Corey said, “It’s for release.”
So, who dismantled the rock art?
It wasn’t the cops; not other homeless, not the guys themselves.
It was the good ol’ City of San Diego itself. City crews (or contractor?) were witnessed dismantling the rock art roughly a week ago by well-known Ocean Beach writer/ reporter Mercy Baron.
Mercy told me in an email that she saw city crews out there taking down the piles and presumably rearranging them.
Now, to be honest, our original article about Corey and Greg was not met with universal acclamation. Some readers made comments that they’re thieves and criminals, or if they had spent as much time looking for work as they did on the rocks, maybe they wouldn’t be homeless.
Many commenters, however, appreciated the rock art. Here are some of them:
- Nice. Hope they’re encouraged to continue their community art.
- I love seeing the stone art; it sets us OBecians apart again from the rest of SD, and in a very good way. Thanks for the artistic idea, Corey and Greg.
- Great story! I admire the rock sculptures every day on my way to and from work, and the rare occasions I leave OB on the weekends. I imagined that the individual(s) building the sculptures were likely homeless locals. I am happy to hear that local law enforcement is appreciative of their contribution to the community and protecting their work. Here is a great example of co-existence within our community in true OB style.
- Whatever happened to appreciating the creativity that ocean beach has always nurtured…..come on folks…..if these guys weren’t homeless, would anyone make a connection between their art and “petty theft, alcohol and drug abuse, tagging, and criminality”…..let’s respect the lives of our fellow obeceans whether they have a home or not….
Well, not to worry now, the gracious City has taken over and reclaimed the rocks and the space.
In one community, the City placed jagged rocks down under an overpass so the homeless couldn’t sleep there. And in Ocean Beach, the City took away the rocks used as art. The City giveth and the City taketh.