Since 2005, before Instagram even existed, there's been an impossible-to-miss, bright-pink wall on the corner of Melrose & Harper in Los Angeles's West Hollywood neighborhood. The punchy exterior reflected the colors used throughout designer Paul Smith's collections, which could be found inside — but with the rise of social media, the well-sunlit wall became a go-to Instagram backdrop and tourist attraction that all but lost its ties to the British clothing label that owned it.
As we've noted, Paul Smith did little to embrace the fact that it had an Instagram phenomenon on its hands — that is, until now. On Wednesday, Instagram and Paul Smith revealed that, in celebration of Pride 2017, the pair teamed up on a new rainbow mural to replace the iconic pink wall. Equally bright and bold as the original pink, the new mural is part of Instagram's global initiative to "turn walls in cities around the world into colorful beacons of support." Paul Smith's is the first and the mural will be up through the LA Pride festival June 10-11.
The mural is certainly impactful, not only because of its bright hues and social significance, but also because of the fact that it replaced an, albeit very unofficial, city landmark. If you say "the pink wall" to someone in Los Angeles, they know what you're talking about. That said, they might also roll their eyes a little bit. Perhaps it was time for the pink wall to get a fresh new look, and that the company chose to do it and finally leverage its social media success in a way that honors the LGBTQ community makes the new mural that much cooler.
In addition to encouraging users to support the community by taking photos and videos against the wall, it's also asking them to take part in its #kindcomments movement by leaving supportive comments on posts. The social media platform also launched a new set of pride stickers for Stories, all created by LGBTQ artists; each sticker can be tapped to find out who made it.
Taking a photo against an "Instagram wall" can feel frivolous and vain (because let's face it, it kind of is), but this is some #content you can feel good about making. Pride murals by artists throughout the Instagram community will also appear in London, Madrid, Nashville and Cleveland, according to Instagram.
Check out a few of the first 'grams taken in front of the LA wall at an event of Wednesday below.