Commemorate 713 Day with Colorful Street Art around Houston
As far as the rest of the world is concerned, today is just silly old July 13 but for Houstonians today is 713 Day! I love H-town and am proud to call this city my home but it took me a while to figure out how I could possibly celebrate this special place without melting in this sweltering heat. If you’re also looking to stay cool while commemorating this quirky local holiday I suggest taking advantage of your car and doing a driving tour of all the amazing street art this cultural hub has to offer. There are murals all over the city and if you’re already out and about, you might as well take a more scenic route to brighten your day.
For those who want to guarantee they drive by a certain mural, perhaps to spruce up their social media presence, you can rely on an online mural map of hundreds of art installations and graffiti from all around the 713. Available to the public since July 15, 2020, this website was a collaboration between UP Art Studio, a non-profit artistic consulting firm; photographer and website developer Alex Barber; and funded in part by the City of Houston’s Arts Alliance program.
Powered by local artists and mural enthusiasts, anyone can upload a photo of a mural and geotag it so others will be able to enjoy this vibrant city. Since the program is linked to Google Maps, users can even create their own tours by copying the locations from the website into My Maps.
While my family and I were running errands all over town recently, we decided to make the most of our outing and use the mural map to take us on an adventure through Montrose, the Heights, and Sawyer Yards. Ultimately, it led us to some of my new favorite street art and reminded me of some hidden gems I had not seen in a long time.
I actually went to high school in Montrose, at Carnegie Vanguard, and the amount of street art I would pass on the drive over never ceased to amaze me. It often felt as if I were touring an extensive outdoor museum and yet I still managed to miss these astounding murals.
Sawyer Yards is another wonderful area to check out street art, especially the Silos and Art Alley, which viewers can explore by driving through a back parking lot that connects several art studios. If you’re willing to get out of the car and brave the heat you’ll especially enjoy this area because there are so many mini murals.
The Heights is well known for its charming antique stores and high quality coffee shops but the murals in the alleys off of 19th Street really elevate the quirkiness of this artsy neighborhood.
Wherever you decide to go in Houston, you're bound to encounter some inspirational art.
Find more information on how to create a self-guided tour through Houston Mural Map here.
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