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50-Foot Portrait of John Lennon to Rise in Central Park for One Day Only

By Shaye Weaver | September 20, 2016 3:56pm
"Imagine Again" is the title of a 2,500-square-foot portrait of John Lennon playing his guitar.
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Eric Waugh

A sprawling, psychedelic portrait of John Lennon will be displayed Wednesday in Central Park — for eight short hours. 

The 2,500-square-foot painting, dubbed "Imagine Again," will be revealed at noon at the Naumburg Bandshell near Fifth Avenue and East 72nd Street and will remain up until 8 p.m.

The portrait, depicting a colorful Lennon playing a guitar, is meant to celebrate the International Day of Peace, and pay tribute to the singer-songwriter, who advocated for peace in the 1970s and up until his death on Dec. 8, 1980.

Artist Eric Waugh used 12 gallons of paint, 17 brushes and spent 88 hours to create the work, he said.

"It is my hope that people surround the painting and pay tribute to John and his dream for a world without strife, war and conflict," said Waugh, who worked out of his studio in Austin, Texas.

In addition to the painting, Waugh said he plans to donate $5,000 to Peace One Day, a nonprofit organization focused on making Sept. 21 a day of global cease fire and non-violence.

"Recent events, at home and abroad, show that John’s vision remains as important as ever,” Waugh continued.

Larger-than-life paintings are somewhat of a specialty for Waugh. He won a Guinness World Record in 2001 for the largest painting on canvas by a single artist. It was an abstract work, measuring 41,400 square feet.

"My goal for this project is to inspire others to help lift the spirits of those who desperately need it," he said.

The International Day of Peace is held each year on Sept. 20 to bring people together to do peaceful activities.

Watch the piece come alive in Waugh's video: