los angeles | Restaurants

Introducing Cryptik at Cleo Third Street

November 13, 2017

Opening this fall, Cleo Third Street offers a warm and welcoming dining atmosphere in the heart of LA’s West Hollywood neighborhood. The newest Cleo location features a custom mural brought to life by Cryptik, whose mysterious and unique works are activated with Eastern philosophical thought in mind – a seemingly perfect fit for Cleo’s elevated Mediterranean experience.

Read on as Cryptik reveals his inspiration for the stunning mural, spanning from Turkish decor to Moroccan elements, specially crafted for the walls of Cleo Third Street. 

Q & A with Cryptik

What influences your artwork or where do you draw inspiration from as you create each piece?

My artwork is generally influenced by teachings from our past, whether it be ancient wisdom traditions, Eastern philosophy or indigenous cultures. I draw much of my inspiration from the diversity and richness of cultures throughout the world. I’m interested in the ways in which we’re all so different, but at the same time discovering the ways that connect us all and makes us human.

What is the Cleo Mural inspired by?

The Cleo mural is inspired by motifs found in the Mediterranean, from Turkish Kilim rugs to Morrocan tiles. I’ve always been drawn to the intricate patterns found throughout the Mediterranean, so this was right up my alley.

What message is the Cleo mural sending?

I’ve incorporated a universal mantra for peace and compassion, ‘Om Mani Padme Hum,’ so hopefully, this is what people feel even if they aren’t able to read it.

What makes it unique from your other work?

I always like to let the space dictate what the artwork will look like, so each piece that I create is unique in that it can only exist there. Everything is taken into consideration, from the decor, color treatments, vibe, etc…, to create a cohesive work of art that feels like it belongs in that particular space.

What attracted you to the opportunity to do this Cleo mural?

I was instantly drawn to Chef Danny Elmaleh’s ‘cross-cultural’ concept, which I feel is similar to what I’m trying to accomplish with my art. His medium just happens to be food, but I think we’re telling the same story.

How do you select your projects?

The projects that I decide to take on have to make sense and align with my own personal ethos. I usually follow my intuition when it comes to what projects I should take on, so it has to feel right.

Does the Cleo painting have a name?


How do you choose a name for your paintings?

A lot of times I’ll already have a title in mind before painting the artwork. The title is what usually inspires the art, although there are times when the art inspires the title.


Why do you choose to remain anonymous?

It’s really due to the fact that my work is spiritual in nature and I would prefer to let the artwork speak for itself. It’s always been about the message and I just don’t want to get in the way of that.

What is your favored medium?

I typically use acrylic, since I paint mostly with a brush.

How did you get your start as an artist?

It really started with my own personal spiritual journey. At the time, I was learning so much from diverse philosophies and ancient wisdom teachings that I wanted to share it with the world and the best way I knew how was through art.

Cryptik’s work can also be found at the Art Angels Gallery in Los Angeles. Joining us at Cleo Third Street? Be sure to share your experience with us on social using #CleoRestaurant + @cleorestaurant!