The Grouchos, finally caught on cam

We shared the first tip last week about the Groucho Marxes visible from the south side of the west end of the high bridge. Now, finally photos — these were linked from a new comment on the original item; the one below was e-mailed to us by Nick Peters:


15 Replies to "The Grouchos, finally caught on cam"

  • mona April 14, 2007 (1:15 am)

    I caught those on my way to work. Very clever!

  • Mike April 14, 2007 (9:35 am)

    This is the kind of creative and fun stuff that I like to see it popping up in the most unexpected places. Kinda’ gives a chance for this city to maintain its vanishing soul. My thanks to whomever climbed up or down to install this work:)

    The stern of one of the old boats that was landlocked in the brush down along Harbor Avenue near Lotus Ave used to be routinely painted with poetry…I knew of the guerrilla poet who pulled that one off…perhaps she will return….

  • The House April 14, 2007 (11:03 am)

    Don’t get me wrong I think the Grouchos, bear and owls are a trip, but there really isn’t a difference between these and grafitti. May I remind a lot of you that you opposed public or private defacing of property in the past? This isn’t any different.

  • Gina April 14, 2007 (11:31 am)

    The advantage of sign grafitti is that it is easy to pluck and dispose of. If only all the taggers would start using signs. No more hunting for sort of matching colors to paint over defaced brick and stucco surfaces. And if someone talks about it being public art, it would be easy to drop tag signs off for that collector’s collection. Hard to do with spray tagging.

    Lesser of two evils. Though I still think that the tagger middle school kids that work the Junction area should be sentenced to wear clothing with their tag on it, so we can know who to thank for their endless ‘artistic’ additions.

  • Mike April 14, 2007 (3:46 pm)

    Hey House,

    I would hope that people are adept enough to know the difference between the temporary nature of the Groucho Marx signs versus spray painted and very difficult to remove graffiti and tagging done to or on public or private buildings, signs or property.

    Poetry painted on the stern of an abandoned boat in a language that every English speaking and literate person can read and understand is not the same as some wanna’-be-banger or street thugs tag or scribble that has an intent far different then the poets.

    I wish I could remember the short poem that was placed on the stern of the boat in question, but alas the memory fails me. I do recall that it was beautiful, and non-offensive, and that the owner of the boat probably would have liked to preserve it in perpetuity.

    Am I making a judgment on what is acceptable guerrilla public art and what is not? Yes I am, and I have no problem doing that.

  • Dawson April 14, 2007 (6:38 pm)

    There’s very much a difference between guerrilla public art, such as this and grafitti. These pieces were meant to entertain and maybe to get we the viewers to view a space differently. The pieces aren’t defacing property like grafitti does and to my knowledge I don’t think other artists are quaking in their birkenstocks about setting foot in WS because of these pieces. Loosen up and enjoy what isn’t mundane and leave the sticks on the trees.

  • Todd in Westwood April 14, 2007 (7:14 pm)

    I am also in favor of guerrilla art. Keep it coming if you are reading this.
    I remember in the 80’s the giant “Bob Dobbs” head popping up all over Seattle on posters.


  • Westseattlite April 14, 2007 (7:15 pm)

    Who is the artist?! I’d like to negotiate the purchase of ONE of the Grouchos! Art really does pay! Please, someone help me. Finders fee may apply.


  • The House April 14, 2007 (8:20 pm)

    Hmmm, I really am not criticizing the Grouchos. Like I said above I think they’re funny. I also completely oppose grafitti. The reality is that it DOES deface public property. Many of you above (Westseattlite, Todd, Dawson) all called it “art” (only Mike admited that he has being judgemental, which I tend to agree with his point). Art it very interprative and under the eyes of the law, if I were to write gang symbols with spraypaint or dry erase marker, it’s still defacing property…doesn’t matter how easy it is to remove.

  • Administrator April 14, 2007 (9:23 pm)

    Since nobody seems to have made this point clearly yet … as far as we can tell from both the photos and from finally getting a good look at the Grouchos while riding an eastbound bus on The Bridge today, they appear to be some sort of freestanding installation on a brushy hillside. Different from The Bear Under The Bridge, which was indeed applied? painted? on a concrete structure. Same sort of turf (albeit a little harder to access) where you would see political signs stuck in the ground during that time of year. Not sure if this is publicly owned land or private – we’d guess publicly, given its proximity to The Bridge.

  • Eric April 16, 2007 (8:18 am)


    What a great burger joint that was! (For all you newbies, it used to be where the drive-through SBUX is now.

  • A dude April 16, 2007 (2:17 pm)

    Still no word on who the artist is?? Looking…any help appreciated.

  • Jan April 17, 2007 (12:24 pm)

    Eric….I remember Groucho’s…and I agree…great burgers…thanks for the memory :)

  • Jo April 22, 2007 (9:40 am)

    I love the ‘Grouchos.’
    Every weekday morning, me and my fellow #37 bus riders crane our necks to get a glimpse of the ‘grouchos.’ Everyone chuckles!
    For me kind of an exercise in “Don’t take myself so damn seriously.”

  • gay July 27, 2008 (8:30 am)

    Does anyone know where the Grouchos have gone? I loved seeing them and pointing them out to visitors to the far West…sorry to see that only the house remains.

Sorry, comment time is over.