The San Diego Union-Tribune recently told the story of one intrepid Amherst College student who took to sleuthing out the provenance of a mural that has for decades adorned the main archway at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
“I basically contacted every single person who might have an idea,”said Dean Gordon '22, who became engrossed with the mural on a tour a few years back, and was not content to hear that the artist was unidentified. He contacted “every archivist, historian or professor who might have some connection to the mural,” rumored to have been painted before the Coliseum hosted the 1932 Olympics.
The article tells of how he eventually traced the mural to Heinz Rosien, a German immigrant who was hired in 1969 to spruce up the archway in hopes of helping the city win a bid for the 1976 Olympics. Gordon would ultimately connect with Rosien’s son Igor Rosien, who had assisted with the painting.
“Thankfully, Dean didn’t take ‘mystery mural’ as an answer,” Igor Rosien told the newspaper.