Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Syd Hoff's FAN DANCE


To supplement my recent post on the biography of Barney Josephson, I wanted to let you know about Syd Hoff's FAN DANCE.   In the book, Cafe Society (reviewed below) there is a reproduction in black and white of the mural by Syd Hoff which was created for the original Cafe Society in the late 1930s.  When I saw the reproduction in the book, I said to myself, "Hey, I know that work!"  It hangs in my favorite Mimi's Restaurant on Los Feliz Blvd. in Los Angeles and I love to eat in that room so I can enjoy viewing the work. So how did this piece of art end up in Los Angeles, I wondered?  My friend, Michael Sheehan, did some research and found a website dedicated to Syd Hoff (http://www/  Syd Hoff's niece, Carol Edmonston, who lives in Fullerton, California, also wondered why the reproduction of this mural was in the Mimi's Cafe in Tustin and eventually figured out that the 5' x 10' reproduction is found in 44 of the 116 Mimi's Restaurants throughout the United States.  She contacted Mimi's and asked that they credit her uncle Syd (1912- 2004), for the art work, so now there is a plaque next to each of the 44 reproductions crediting Syd Hoff.  Hoff, you may know, wrote Danny and the Dinosaur, a very famous children's book, but he was also a prolific cartoonist for The New Yorker.  There is still a mystery to solve about the location of the original piece of art and how the mass production of the piece was accomplished (without his signature).  Perhaps you have a clue to share with Carol Edmonston?  Perhaps you share my love of Syd Hoff's work?

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