Who Originated the Buddha on the Boulevard?

Topangans Kedric Wolfe and Clare Brown both had a hand in the creation of the Buddha mural on Topanga Canyon Boulevard. In 1981, Wolfe, along with Elizabeth Shepherd and David Tothero, hooked up an overhead projector to a generator, placed it across the boulevard from the concrete block wall where they beamed the peaceful image through the night. They sketched and painted quickly with black and white paint, until the Buddha sat in the lotus, calmly holding the earth in his hands. Color was added later on. In 2017, Brown received Wolfe’s blessing to revive the faded painting with bright colors on a white wall. She recruited volunteers Ibraheem Jamel and Katrina Leigh Carter to complete the labor of love. Last month, Brown and Wolfe, two longtime Topanga neighbors stood at the site of the mural for the first time to review their work. Although Wolfe now lives in Canton, Ohio, Topanga is the place, he says, where his most creative years unfolded. That’s the power of keeping spirit alive. It takes a village. #PeopleMatter


Reclining stork-like at the feet of the Buddha, Wolfe, limber as ever, will always be a performer of life, love, and fun. Photo by Kim Zanti


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