The Westside Sign: What Is It?

The Westside gang sign is created with four fingers, while the stylised “W” is made with one hand with the middle and ring fingers intertwined. The back of a hand resembles a capital W because of the way the thumb bends inward toward the palm.

Since the Westside sign first debuted in rap music videos in the late 1980s, it has become a well-known emblem in Los Angeles. Tupac Shakur made the sign well-known with images and songs that referenced the Westside.

After a thorough refurbishment of the 1906 structure, artist JR painted a four-story-tall Westside sign on the east facade of the famed Bristol Apartments in Los Angeles in 2011.

Misha Khatri
Misha Khatri is an emeritus professor in the University of Notre Dame's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He graduated from Northern Illinois University with a BSc in Chemistry and Mathematics and a PhD in Physical Analytical Chemistry from the University of Utah.


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