A functional amusement park with rides and attractions designed by world famous artists including Jean-Michael Basquiat, Salvador Dali and Keith Haring, has been saved after 35 years in storage by Drake’s investment team DreamCrew.
The amusement park, known as Luna Luna, was conceptualized and opened in 1987 by Vienese artist Andre Heller in Hamburg, Germany. To create the attraction, Heller traveled the world to persuade his favorite artists to participate.
In New York, an ailing Andy Warhol sent Heller to meet an up-and-coming Basquiat, who insisted on the inclusion of Miles Davis. Haring took Heller to meet Kenny Scharf. Lichtenstein gave a number for Hockney.
The designs were created with the help of 220 artisans from the Viennese opera and theater community using old carnival equipment. The park opened briefly, but had to be sold in 1990 when the city of Vienna passed on the opportunity to buy the park and display it permanently over political concerns.
The entire project was sold for approximately $6 million to the Stephen and Mary Birch Foundation, which hoped to show it in San Diego. But concerns over rights and disputes over charging admission sparked decades of litigation, which forced the project into obscurity. Since 2007 it has been sitting in rural Texas untouched.
Now, with a $100 million dollar investment led by DreamCrew, Luna Luna has been moved to Los Angeles. Quite curious to see what the DreamCrew does with such a tremendous time capsule.
From an ASM perspective, I cannot help but wonder how they underwrote such an investment.