Friday, July 11, 2008
Farmer John Meats
On the north side of Grant Road, just east of the I-10 underpass, is a former meat packing plant, Farmer John Meats.
The exterior walls are covered with murals celebrating the cowboy myth of happy cattle and Marlboro Man ranchers.
As mesquite hugger and pesco-lacto-ovo-vegetarian (that's a joke, son), I am of course cynical about the whole How the West was Won legend, but I like these murals.
According the the New York Times, these murals were painted in the 1960s by Leslie Allen Grimes, a Hollywood set designer. He also painted murals for Farmer John Meats in Vernon and Fresno, California and Phoenix. Amusing comments about the murals at the Farmer John slaughter house in Vernon can be found here.
Mr. Grimes died in 1968 in a fall from a scaffolding while painting one of his murals. Arno Jordan restored and added to the murals from 1968 to 1998.
I'm not sure whether anyone is still maintaining the murals. I also wonder what is going to happen to Tucson's defunct Farmer John plant. I think I remember hearing years ago that it may become a nightclub or something.