The HOPE Outdoor Gallery is a ‘must see’ in Austin. A few things stood out to me (besides the obviously huge amount of street art). I didn’t realize the the space is actively being created. I guess I assumed artists would come out in the middle of the night and paint on the walls, with one eye on the look out for cops. That is not the case here. When I visited in the middle of the day, there were several people working on new spray paint murals. I’m not really sure if they’re technically allowed to be doing that, so I’m certainly not telling you to go spray paint at the Outdoor Gallery. I was just amazed at the activeness of the space. If anyone knows more about the gallery and can elaborate on the rules of painting in the the space, that would be very helpful.
The next thing I thought was how awesome it is that the city lets the HOPE Outdoor Gallery exist at all! They could easily paint over the art, plow the lot completely, arrest people for ‘vandalism,’ you name it. But this isn’t the case, and I think that speaks volumes for what the city of Austin is all about. I know it’s a part of the larger HOPE Campaign, so I’m sure that has something to do with it. On the HOPE Outdoor Gallery Facebook page, they state their mission as: “The purpose of this ‘Paint Park’ project is to utilize the space for educational purposes through creation of artistic and community messages represented through large-scale murals, street art, and graffiti.” Love it.
Lastly, I was struck by the view of the city you have from the top of the murals. There aren’t any stairs, so get your climbing shoes on. If you can make it to the top (I did it in a skirt and sandals, you’ll be alright) there is a wonderful view of downtown and beyond.
The HOPE Outdoor Gallery is located at 11th and Baylor in downtown – go visit it! Be sure to bring your camera too.