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Museum of Neon Art

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The Museum of Neon Art (MONA) features vintage signs as well as modern, sculptural neon art. The museum was founded in 1981. After temporary locations in downtown Los Angeles and Universal City (see below), MONA opened at its permanent home in Glendale in 2016. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, and 3. [map]
Museum of Neon Art
Glendale, CA
The photos above are a small representation of MONA's collection. The museum rotates vintage signs from its collection and features other vintage and modern neon signs and artwork from outside collections and artists. Many thanks to Adriene Biondo for information about these signs.

The animated Winning Wire sign (top row above) is from the 1930s and features ripple tin panels.

The Camera sign (second row) was originally displayed at a Iwata Photo Supply in downtown Los Angeles.

The Van de Kamp's Bakery sign (second row) features turning blades. These signs were mass-produced for the company's stores.

The two dog signs (second row) came from Papoo's Hot Dog Show in Burbank, CA. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

The Bricklayer sign (third row) was built in 1952. It was part of a larger sign installed at Midway Building Materials which was "midway" between Ontario and Pomona. The sign was donated to MONA in 2002.

The Pie A La Mode signs (third row) came from the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds in Pomona, CA.

The Grill sign (third row) came from San Diego.

The Leader Foods sign (third row) came from the Grand Central Market in Los Angeles.

The Park sign (fourth row) came from a parking garage in downtown Los Angeles.

The Fun Land sign (fourth row) was built in the 1930s. It was originally installed at an amusement park in New York.

The Dining & Banquet Room sign (fourth row) came from the Bel-Air Motel in Fresno, CA. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

The Chris' & Pitt's signs (fifth row) are from the 1950s. They were originally displayed at Chris' & Pitt's 8th location in the San Fernando Valley. The pole sign from this location is now located at the American Sign Museum in Cincinnati, OH.

The Dr. N. Hoffman Optometrist sign (bottom row) was originally installed in North Hollywood, CA.

Four other signs from MONA are featured elsewhere at my website: the Clayton Plumbers sign, the Green Frog Market sign, the Bendix Building garage sign, and the Paramount Pest Control sign.

La Fonda Restaurant
West Hollywood, CA
diver sign
Glendale, CA
diver sign
West Hollywood, CA
2012: 2016:
The La Fonda Restaurant opened in Glendale, CA in 1945. The sign was built in 1946. It was donated to MONA in 1984. The sign was displayed at Universal Studios' CityWalk from 1993-2000. In 2010, it was installed in the median of Santa Monica Boulevard. It was one of several vintage signs which were displayed there for the West Hollywood's "On Route - 66 Lights" installation which celebrated the city's 25th anniversary. The signs were removed by 2013. This La Fonda sign reappeared at MONA in Glendale in 2016. For more, see this website.

These diver signs are replicas of the Virginia Court Motel sign which was located in Meridian, MS. The original sign was built in 1950 when the motel added a pool. When the motel was demolished in the 1990s, the sign was saved by a collector. He had the sign restored and loaned it to the Museum of Neon Art in Los Angeles. The sign was then sold to another sign collector in Los Angeles.

While the sign was at MONA, a replica was made for West Hollywood's "On Route -- 66 Lights" display. That sign is owned by West Hollywood. After being in storage for several years, the sign was temporarily installed in 2016 next to the West Hollywood Pool. There are plans to install the signs at a permanent location in 2018.

In 2014, a second replica of the Meridian sign was built for MONA and installed on the roof of the museum in Glendale. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, and 3.

Museum of Neon Art
Pomona, CA
The Museum of Neon Art stores many of its vintage signs at the Pomona Packing Plant. Some of them will be restored and displayed at the museum in Glendale, CA. The museum also has other vintage signs in storage at other locations in the Los Angeles area.

The signs below are on display at Universal Studios' CityWalk. The vintage signs were restored by the Museum of Neon Art. In the early 1990s, the museum was located at CityWalk and installed about 20 vintage neon signs there. Many of them remain on long-term loan. Although the museum opened in 2016, these signs will be staying at CityWalk. For more, see this website. [map]

Richfield Oil
Universal City, CA
Steele's Motel
Universal City, CA
Wendy's Western Woundup
Universal City, CA
The Richfield Oil eagle sign is from a 1940s gas station. The sign is 13 feet tall. The sign was donated to MONA in 1992 and restored. It would have been installed on top of the station like this one. For more, see this website.

Steele's Motel was built in Sherman Oaks in 1934 as the Steele's Motor Lodge. This 20 foot tall sign was built around 1954. It features a five-part animated female diver diving into a pool. The motel was demolished in 1988. The sign was later donated to the museum. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

Wendy's Western Woundup was located in Los Angeles. I believe it was a Western clothing store. The sign is relatively modern. I believe it was built in the 1980s. For more, see this website.

Melrose Theatre
Universal City, CA
Earl Carroll Theatre
Universal City, CA
These Melrose Theatre bulb signs were built in the 1920s. They were part of a 30 by 45 foot rooftop display which was removed in the 1970s. Some of the pieces were saved by future founders of MONA. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

The Earl Carroll Theatre sign is a recreation of the 1938 sign which was located in Hollywood. The recreation was built in 1993 by MONA. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, and 3.

bucking bull
Universal City, CA
Holmes Tuttle Pontiac
Universal City, CA
I believe the bucking bull sign is from the 1980s. For more, see this website.

The Holmes Tuttle Pontiac sign is about 12 feet long. It was built in the 1940s. The front and back panels are displayed separately. The dealership was originally located in Los Angeles. The sign was removed by the 1970s and put in storage. It was donated to MONA in 1982. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

Condes' Restaurant
Universal City, CA
Condes' Restaurant was located in Gardena, CA. The sign was built in 1960 when the restaurant opened. The 20 foot long sign features flickering flames. For more, see this website.

Pioneer Super Market
Universal City, CA
Buca di Beppo
Universal City, CA
Samba Brazilian
Steakhouse and Lounge
Universal City, CA
The Pioneer Super Market flashing cars sign was built in 1948 to direct customers to its parking lot. Before the store was demolished, the six cars were saved by a MONA volunteer.

The Buca di Beppo sign is modern. The nationwide chain of Italian restaurants opened their first location in Minneapolis, MN in 1993. This sign design has been used for all their other locations including the one at Citywalk.

The Samba Brazilian Steakhouse and Lounge sign is modern. For more, see this website.

Popcornopolis
Universal City, CA
Cinnabon
Universal City, CA
The modern signs in this row have nothing to do with MONA but I'll include them anyway since they are displayed at CityWalk.

The Popcornopolis sign is installed at this Popcornopolis store. For more, see this website.

The Cinnabon sign is installed in front of this Cinnabon store.

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