Monday, October 31, 2016


I found this mural on Aug. 14, 2016  behind Liquor Express on S. Park Ave.  I can't decide whether the tags are part of the mural or added afterward.  What do you think?

Definitely a Halloween theme with crosses in the background and a Ghoul and carved pumpkin in the foreground.  Click on the photo for a larger and sharper image.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Red Hot

Photographed July 31, 2016 at the Speedway Center, a strip mall on the SW corner of Speedway and Swan.  It can only be seen from the alley behind the Center.

If you can interpret the writing on the mural, please leave a comment.  I interpret the initials in the upper left to be STP.  It may be the tag of the graffiti crew "Sworn To Paint".  Or,...something else entirely.

As usual, click on the photo for a larger and sharper image

The mural was painted in June or July of 2016.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Front of Miles ELC

Here's the front entrance of the Miles ELC (Exploratory Learning Center) on May 1st:

Monday, October 24, 2016

Blossom Head Skull Stars

(Or is the bottom something like an agave instead of a blossom?)

I found this on 7th Street, at the corner of Ferro Avenue, on May 1st.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Youth Employment

Nice mosaic at Pima County's Youth Employment One-Stop Center located at 2323 S Park Ave.

Photographed on Nov. 3, 2015.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Beep Beep

Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner found on Sept. 10, 2016.

Click for a larger image.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Ben Maestas

Joy Maestas sent photos of murals by her son Ben Maestas in her back yard. Though we don't show murals on private property, Joy told me that you can see the murals from outside.

First, a long stretch of murals around two walls:
And two more:
If you'd like to get in touch with Ben, his phone number is (520)302-8038 and his email is

Thank you, Joy (and Ben)!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Murals being made, part 40: Paulo Freire Freedom School entryway

The murals blog is back after a long weekend.

Today, the second set of photos of CITY Center for Collaborative Learning. Santo Nicotera sent photos of two murals at Paulo Freire Freedom School. Last time, we showed a mural downstairs.

Santo went above and beyond by sending 20 photos showing students painting a mural by the entryway! I can't show all 20 here — partly because I won't show students' faces without permission — but these should give you a good idea. Let's get started!

Thanks again, so much, Santo!

Friday, October 07, 2016

Downstairs at Paulo Freire Freedom School

Santo Nicotera from CITY Center for Collaborative Learning sent photos of two murals at Paulo Freire Freedom School, which is just off Fourth Avenue. (We only show murals that are accessible to the public, and this one is.) This mural is downstairs, lower than street level:

Thanks to Santo, the photos on Monday will be of students painting a mural in the entryway. Check back!

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

(Not) Mural Lovers, part 3

I was walking along Tyndall, just south of University Boulevard, two days ago. The south side of the buildings that face University (along their opposite side) have a series of brilliant mosaic tile murals. There used to be a tree mural wrapping around the southwest corner of the building along Tyndall, but now — as you can see — the mural is partly covered by a sign advertising the business to come:

This is almost as much respect for art as the destroyed murals along 22nd Street at Aviation Highway. Trashing a tree for natural food (which is what Cup It Up serves)?? Couldn't the business owner have made the sign more squat and put it just over the mural?

If you feel the same way, here's contact information for the location at 1101 N. Wilmot: 520-398-6700, Or, if you're at the U of A, maybe the door along Tyndall will be open if you pass by it. Why not stop by or give them a call — and give them a piece of your mind (or heart)?


Update: Not long after this blog entry appeared, I got a message from the restaurant that the mural had already been damaged before they moved into the building and replaced the existing sign with another at the same place. Fair enough, I suppose, though for people who don't know the story (as I didn't) it still shows the owner in a bad light. Because it's a mosaic with lots of different-colored and shaped tiles it seems like this would be a fairly easy mural to fix.

Update (July 12, 2018): I got email from Amy Collinsworth of Ben's Bells to point out that they designed the mural to fit around the original sign. As you can read in the previous update, the owner said he just replaced the original sign. (That still left me the impression that the original sign had been placed on top of the mural, since the tops of branches seem to go under the sign. But I was wrong!) Here's part of a photo that Amy sent to show the original installation:

Thanks for pointing this out, Amy — and my apologies.

Monday, October 03, 2016

Murals being made, part 39: TEP south of Cushing

Artist Sabrina Vincent (also known as Slov) sent email to tell me about a new mural of hers at Valley of the Moon. (I haven't had a chance to see it yet. Closer to Halloween, I hope?)

Slov also mentioned that Allison Miller, from the Desert Museum, was painting a mural that Allison had mentioned to me in July. (Back then, she sent me a photo of their new Stingray mural on Speedway. Allison wrote “The next mural will be on a TEP substation in the Menlo Park neighborhood (on Simpson, off of the I-10 Frontage Rd.); it’s theme is all about Pollinators!”) Then I saw a story from Tucson News Now: TEP, Desert Museum create giant 'paint-by-numbers' mural. Slov said Allison and crew would start Saturday and finiah Sunday: quick work! (Click on the photo in that story to see a view of the volunteers at work on Saturday.)

It was dumping rain by the time I got there yesterday. I decided to come back today. It's a big mural! Small parts look like they might not be quite finished (maybe because of that rainstorm?), but overall it's spectacularly big, wrapping around two walls of a TEP substation. Let's look, starting at the southwest corner (the end along Simpson), to the corner of the frontage road, to the north end farther up the frontage road.

Update (February 9, 2018): My guess that the mural wasn't quite finished when I took the 2016 photos was right. An artist friend walked by this week and snapped some photos that she sent me. I've added her 2018 photos between my original 2016 photos below. (I'm also guessing that the mural was finished shortly after I took my 2016 photos.) Let's start with the first five original photos from 2016:

(The white flower above, and a few other white spots along the mural, are what make me think that it's not… quite… finished.)

The first photo below, from 2016, is completely missing a pomegranate, a lot of the flower (toward the left-hand side) isn't finished, and the left tip of the butterfly's wing is blank. The second through fourth photos below, from 2018, show the same spot and then more detail:

Back to 2016:

Next, 2016 followed by 2018:

Back to 2016:

To find the mural, turn south from either Congress or Cushing Streets onto “Freeway”, the frontage road along the west side of I-10. The substation is just past the Riverpark Inn at the corner with Simpson Street.

Thanks, Slov, Allison, and crew!

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Nice overview of TAB's recent work

For 20 years or so, the Tucson Arts Brigade has been making art that works for the community. Yesterday they tweeted (from @artsbrigade) a number of their latest projects: a series of photos of some of their latest work. Have a look! Click on the previous link and scroll down to 2016 Murals & Downtown Mural Project…. Then keep scrolling down to Trash Container Mural Demonstration Project, and farther to Mural Gallery.