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Mini Murals around Houston

Benjamin Cohen
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ADLA at Lamar

This mini mural is located at ADLA at Lamar outside the George R. Brown Convention Center in Downtown. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

You might have spotted new, colorful additions to your neighborhood in the form of a mini mural. What used to be plain traffic signal control cabinets, commonly referred to as utility cabinets, have been reimagined and transformed into creative opportunities for artists to express themselves.

This project started as a pilot phase in the summer of 2015 and has since evolved into dozens of mini murals located across the city of Houston. Artists first submit their mural design and, if selected, they get the opportunity to paint their design on a utility box.

Mini murals are part of an active program established by the city of Houston to beautify communities and showcase the talent of local artists. Back in 2016, I interviewed artist Roger Seward as he was painting the mural on the corner of South Rice and Bissonnet. Seward noted that this creative painting is “rewarding because everyone can enjoy it.”

West 19th at Yale

This mini mural is located at West 19th at Yale St. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

The mini murals are created and managed by Elia and Noah Quiles from UP Art Studio. They have partnered with the City of Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs, the Department of Public Works and Engineering, city council members, management districts, and other departments that aid in making this beautification project come to life.

No matter what design is painted on these utility cabinets, UP Art Studios notes on their Facebook page that the main goal is “to bring art to areas of Houston in a non-conventional manner.” So, next time you’re on the road around Houston, keep your eye out for one of these beautifully-painted boxes.

UP Art Studio is currently holding an Open Call in search of more talented artists to join a team of imaginers to help further assist in creating mini murals across Houston. 

I went with fellow summer intern, Kelly Thomas, on the hunt around Houston to locate some of these spectacular pieces of art. They spotted the most mini murals while Downtown and in The Heights. Check out these amazing pieces of art in the photo slideshow below and comment to let us know where your favorite mini murals are around town.

Ben and Kelly also scoured the city for the top “Instaworthy” spots. See their finds here.

  • Center St. at the Heights

    This mini mural is located at Center St. at Heights Blvd. in the Heights. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

     

  • Dallas at Crawford

    This mini mural is located at  Dallas St. at Crawford in downtown. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

     

  • Heights at 14th

    This mini mural is located at Heights Blvd. at 14th St. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

     

  • Lamar at Crawford

    This mini mural is located at Lamar St. at Crawford. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

  • West 6th at Heights

    This mini mural is located at West 6th at Heights Blvd. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

  • Center St. at the Heights
  • Dallas at Crawford
  • Heights at 14th
  • Lamar at Crawford
  • West 6th at Heights

More photos

Center St. at the Heights

This mini mural is located at Center St. at Heights Blvd. in the Heights. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

 

Dallas at Crawford

This mini mural is located at  Dallas St. at Crawford in downtown. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

 

Heights at 14th

This mini mural is located at Heights Blvd. at 14th St. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

 

Lamar at Crawford

This mini mural is located at Lamar St. at Crawford. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

West 6th at Heights

This mini mural is located at West 6th at Heights Blvd. (Photo: Benjamin Cohen) 

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