Phlebotomic is a blog experiment that seeks to gather multiple perspectives around a common prompt, which is provided weekly.

Last week's prompt was "Beauty"...

This week's prompt is "Path"...

22 January 2009

Art: a battle

I work in a poor part of town. I'm in the car a lot. I see a lot of this city that many of the people I know outside of work never see. I love my city. It's still new to me with a lot left to find, but I have found a few things that bring me back from time to time. Sometimes a new one will pop up, and I'll get to feel the thrill of discovery on a grand scale. Other times one I've known for a long time will reveal something new, something I had overlooked.

San Antonio is a city of murals. Many are organized by the community. Some serve as reminders, others teach a lesson, and all reflect the beauty in the artists. Still others are spraypainted on boxcars or street signes by some guy to mark turf. I'm a fan of both artistically... It's when the two cross that I get angry.

One of my favorite murals is on the side of the Friends Mart building on Guadalupe. It shows Native American people in beautifully vivid color. The detail is wonderful. I found a small lizard in the background last month, but I made another discovery that day. Taggers had marked up the mural to "rep their cru". The store had to paint over the tag in generic green before the city fined them, but that brings more attention to the blight. What was once a little slice of beautiful became a reminder of the ugly. I know art is not all about beauty, however, in this case the community spent the time to paint an otherwise average wall, in a poor and downtroden part of town, beautifully.

I'm pro Mural.

For a tour of West Side Murals

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