The painter of a mysterious mural at the Village Vanguard jazz club, Philip Stein, died at the age of 90:
On the back-wall mural at the Village Vanguard, the famous jazz club in Greenwich Village, a primordial man and woman burst from a kaleidoscopic background of brightly colored geometric forms. For more than 40 years musicians have gazed, perhaps with some puzzlement, at this visionary artwork, suggestive of birth, creative dynamism and human aspiration. Patrons seated on bar stools at the back of the club have come to think of the big, curved mural as a visual counterpart to the cascading notes drifting toward them from the stage. [ . . . ] The origins of Mr. Stein’s mural are obscure. Painted on canvas, it has no title, although it has been referred to as “New Man, New Woman.” A date on the lower right-hand corner indicates that it was finished in 1968, part of a three-wall mural executed by Mr. Stein that dripping water from the building’s upper stories reduced to a one-wall mural.