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City Attorney Seeks to Smash SMEAR’s Rights

Now this is fucked up. City Attorney Carmen Trutanich is seeking to limit the freedoms of one (and only one) of the city's most prolific former street artists and current canvas painters: SMEAR. L.A. Times has a full account of the artist's alleged past crimes and a hot photo where you can pretty much smell the dude. The story finds Trutanich trying, through a lawsuit, to limit SMEAR's rights to sell his own art. Not his street art, but the paintings that the artist is making at home that comes signed "SMEAR."

The artist already has the ACLU on his side, as that organization calls the attack an assault on artistic freedom. But the city attorney claims the artist hasn't paid his past fines in full, even if a criminal record for painting on the street has gotten him bounced from a job teaching special ed and ended his pursuit of a pharmacy technician career, only leaving him with trauma from frequent police raids. As pointed out in the story, SMEAR is sadly paying the price for trying to adhere to the law and sell his art legally. We caught up with him recently, and as always, he was very excited about the new work and artistic progression he's working on. This isn't Soviet-era Romania here Trutch', stop stepping on citizen's rights and start promoting the arts in all forms. In any case, nice top spot SMEAR's mug in the paper! Let's hope it helps him sell some art and buy his own place in city government someday soon.

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