AUSTIN, Texas -- From a dark canvas to a multi-colored array of paints, this new mural in East Austin is the latest in a city seemingly being taken over by art.
"It's really wonderful and adds a lot to our culture artistically just to have public art," said Andi Scull Cheatham, the Executive Producer of HOPE and Hope Outdoor Gallery.
The interest in such art is evident at Hope Outdoor Gallery where 1,000 people daily stop by to take pictures and contribute to the living exhibit.
"When we started the Hope Outdoor Gallery in 2010, it was just the beginning of seeing a lot more public street art around Austin. And now, seven, almost eight years later, it's become a lot more of the fabric that is our local Austin community," said Cheatham.
Throughout Austin, there's been an explosion of public displays of art, many of which have been commissioned by local businesses. You can add Native Hostel on East Fourth Street to that list. On Tuesday, JonOne, a famed Paris-based street artist, contributed a mural to the side of their building.
"It's more about energy than imagery," JonOne told a group of assembled onlookers following his painting, which took about an hour and a half to complete. After growing up and getting his start in New York, JonOne has been working in the industry for the past three decades, and his work is on display in several different countries throughout the world.
On average, Cheatham said art at the Hope Outdoor Gallery stands for just 48 hours, far different than many murals that adorn the city's businesses which can stand for months or years. She
"Having the 60s and 70s have Austin be such a mecca to the music scene, and for us to now be very much known for the artistic talent that has always been living here, but now having more creatives and artists come because they feel that they can call this place home," Cheatham said.
JonOne was in Austin for the launch of a new Hennessey V.S. Limited Edition bottle. He's the first Hispanic artist to be commissioned by the company to work on their label.
As he discussed the support he's received from Hope Outdoor Gallery, he reflected on the significance of the gallery's name.
"I like the word hope, because that's my mother's name. Seriously, my mother's name is Esparanza. "Esperanza" in Spanish means "hope." It's always positive to be called hope. My mom had a lot of hope for me - look at me now," JonOne reflected, sitting down in front of his creation.
One more day, and one more canvas, in a city where there's no such thing as too much art.
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