My visits to my dad involved a trip across town from Kansas City to Independence. While my routes vary a lot, I often drive on Truman Road. It is just wonderfully urban.
I particularly love this corner store East of downtown on Truman Road. The storefront is covered with cartoon characters. I never could figure out the name of the store, but it appears that it sells hats, CD’s and “skull candy”? Seriously. I don’t know. The owners came outside to see what I was doing, but seemed pleased that I considered their art worthy of attention.
These gentlemen were hard at work. They appeared to be having fun as they worked. When they saw me, they waved and let me take their photographs. their work stopped for a moment. They were in a good mood and so was I.
Meg is gone. Tough day. Need to have some fun. Drove down Troost in Mid-Town Kansas City. Found wonderful art on the wall at the Kansas City Urban Youth Center. I don’t know anything about the Center, but they have great art on their walls. It made my day a little brighter. Hope it does for you as well.
Graffiti and wall art add color and life to our city streets. They are very much a part of the culture of our urban community. The artists deserve to be acknowledged. But even more, they deserve a wider audience.
Meg and I agree we have a lot to celebrate. Today I want to celebrate and share more of Kansas City’s graffiti. My weekly adventures often provide we opportunities to find new murals throughout our urban community. These paintings were found just barely Southeast of downtown. The artist or artists plying their trade on this freshly painted wall obviously love color. There were at least half a dozen individual paintings extending from one building well into the alley just East of Grand within a 7 minute walk to our center city.
“Feminines” is almost certainly the artist’s signature on this wonderful rendition of a mythical bird.
While renditions of death are very unusual on wall art, this skull seems to smile from the wall.
The shocking pink on this final mural adds to the festive nature of this block in Kansas City.
Live in a city? Hope you enjoy the wall art where ever your route takes you. It is, in the best sense, the people’s art.
In years past, teenagers snuck out at night with paint brushes and spray cans to create what was generally mediocre, if colorful, graffiti under bridges, on vacant buildings and sometimes the sides of churches and schools.
Without question the world of graffiti has changed. The murals I see on my drives through urban Kansas City are often exquisite works of art that appear to have been the work of artists hired by business owners to create colorful displays on the exteriors of their buildings. Even the texture of the bricks beneath the designs adds to the visual impact. It is, in effect, graffiti “grown up”.
When I happen upon a particularly colorful design, I find I alter my route to and from work just to see the art over and over again. I regret only that I am unable to identify the artist so I could praise them by name on this post.
At least I can honor these urban artists by sharing their creative designs with our friends. In Kansas City, at least, art finds its form in these creative, incredibly colorful, urban designs. Aren’t we lucky!
Meg and I love to travel. When we return home, she returns to Petaluma; I return to Kansas City. Missouri doesn’t have an ocean or a light house. It doesn’t have sandy beaches. It doesn’t have mountains. But Kansas City does have art, lots of art. Some amazing art is right in plain sight, but we don’t always notice it. I have spent a lot of time driving around the city recording this art. I thought I would share some of the art I found on Kansas City’s East Side.
Sometimes the artist is paid well for the paintings or is a professional who volunteers his/her time and talent. This mural on Troost Avenue presents images of Kansas City’s history: Walt Disney, Mickey Mouse, Martin Luther King, Jr., native Americans.
Some art is for children, such as the mural at Operation Breakthrough, which records the images of creatures, large and small.
Sometimes kids create their own art without permission on bridges, abandoned buildings and overpasses, ie graffiti. The vivid colors are impossible to ignore.
Frequently road art captures the essence of a community within a community. Sometimes it conveys hope.
Other times it conveys the joy of creativity and the enthusiasm of youth.