(Last UPDATED 7/8/2020) RECAP: Wide Open Walls took place from August 10 through August 20. Last year, the first Sacramento Mural Festival was a great success. See related post: Sacramento Mural Festival – A Sacramento First!
This year the renamed event returned–bigger and better–as Wide Open Walls. More than 50 artists participated in the event at multiple locations in Sacramento – including Midtown, Downtown, Natomas, Del Paso Heights and Oak Park.
Wide Open Walls participating artists include artists from: Sacramento, CA; Melbourne, Australia; Auckland, New Zealand; Hong Kong, China; Venice, CA; New York City, NY; Santa Cruz; CA; Naples, Italy; Los Angeles, CA; Voronezh, Russia; Nevada City, CA; Madrid, Spain; Sheffield, United Kingdom; Laguna Beach, CA; and, Berlin, Germany.
SacramentoRevealed.com – All Things Sacramento (from a personal perspective)
Wide Open Walls – Improv Alley
On Day 8 of Wide Open Walls I headed downtown in the morning to Improv Alley as multiple artists were assigned the site for their murals. I arrived around 10:30 a.m. thinking that it might be a good time to catch some of the artists “in the act” so to speak.
I had never heard of Improv Alley before – despite being a long-time Sacramento resident – but I soon discovered that it is located on 7th Street between J and K Streets.
What I found when I arrived was a number of “works-in-progress” and no artists in sight. Scaffolding was in place in front of many of incomplete murals making picture-taking impractical.
There was one Wide Open Walls banner listing the multiple artists working in Improv Alley – but there was no way of identifying the artist that was working on a particular mural. A nice volunteer was on duty making sure that cars were aware they could not drive through the alley – which was blocked off on one end.
However, he was in the dark as to artists/murals – identifying Panels A-E, etc.
Artists whose works can be found in Improv Alley are:
The artist Ludo hails from Paris, France. According to his WOW bio, his work is often called Nature’s Revenge as it connects the world of plants and animals with our technological universe and quest for modernism.
The artist Phlegm is from Sheffield in the United Kingdom. According to his WOW bio, Phlegm is a self-published cartoonist, illustrator, and street artist known for his highly detained, large scale works. (Retaining Wall)
The Developmental Disabilities Service Organization (DDSO) Mural Project is now in its 9th year. DDSO is a nonprofit that provides adults with disabilities the opportunity to experience independence, job training, employment, physical education, and the visual and performing arts, among other things. (Panel A & B)
Michael McDaniel is a TLCS (Transforming Lives, Cultivating Success) Personal Services Coordinator and Northern California artist. According to his WOW bio, he paints abstracts with lots of color and texture. (Panel C & D)
According to his WOW bio, Josh Everhorn, a Los Angeles artist, holds a high-ranking position in the exhibits department at the California Science Center in Los Angeles. His artwork has been featured in several different exhibitions around the world. (Panel E)
The ARTners Collaborative is a Sacramento-based gallery, studio and event center that hosts a collective of artists. Representing the Collaborative at Wide Open Walls are Markos Egure of Wes Kos Images, Norm Ayles from Normaste Art and Teresa Gutierrez from Pink Street Art. (Retaining Wall)
While there I took a few pictures and decided to return to Improv Alley at a later date. Some of the works-in-progress looked very interesting.
I was intrigued to see that one or more of the artists had incorporated the commercial-size waste containers placed along the retaining wall into their mural(s). It made me wonder, after the receptacle was next emptied, the effect on the mural if the container was not placed back in exactly the same spot. I also wondered if the artist cared – or not.
Wide Open Walls – Kayak Alley
I next took a short walk down the street to view the mural of Lady Gaga being created by artist Christina Angelina (Venice, CA). It is located at 1120 7th Street in what is known as Kayak Alley.
I had also never heard of Kayak Alley – so I was uncertain as to exactly where the mural was located – until I arrived at the site. Kayak Alley is on 7th Street midway between K and L Streets.
According to her WOW bio, Christina Angelina is an internationally known artist who was born, raised and now based in Venice, CA. She typically paints her figurative portraits on large-scale outdoor walls – and is known for her detailed, realistic murals that often depict female figures.
I am guessing that this mural of Lady Gaga is going to be among the favorites in Sacramento.
(UPDATED 7/8/2020) Broken link deleted.
(UPDATED 8/23/17) Link added.
Comments on Wide Open Walls?
What are your favorite murals created during this year’s event?
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