Possibly the best piece of art in all the graffiti around town and definitely my favorite was the one with a big human eye that I’ve shown here before and repeat below. Unfortunately it had been abused by less talented graffiti artists or kids painting over it and the other day I noticed it has now been totally painted over. I guess that is one thing a graffiti artist has to expect at some times, and of course the new one doesn’t even compare in talent, but at least it is fresh. 🙂
And a closer up view of my old favorite graffiti . . .
At one point in the early 2000’s it seemed to have been a popular community art project to create a bunch of statues of something representing a community or state and have an art contest with local painters. Well, that was done in Costa Rica sometime prior to 2009 and the oxen animal (not the more famous ox cart) was chosen. A winner is chosen with his/her cash prize and then all the entries become “Public Art” placed around town in parks or other public places or businesses and individuals can buy with a large donation to “Public Art” in that community. (See below how that was done 3 times during my years in Nashville.)
Long story short, one of the “Art Ox” ended up in the gardens of Best Western Irazú it was called then, now Best Western Plus San Jose. FYI, that is coffee beans painted on the side of the oxen and the basket he is figuratively eating out of is one of the traditional coffee bean picking baskets used by workers to harvest coffee beans when ripe. The only other painted ox I have photographed was at Hampton Inn Airport and I can’t find that photo.
A Similar Public Art Project in Nashville 3 times
And with those three contests and additions of art I managed to photograph most if not all of the entries which are now public art like the oxen here in Costa Rica:
They are replacing all the old graffiti murals that were on this sidewalk wall. This is first one completed. The whole wall was painted black first, then tags (below), now this over one of the tags, a turquoise scribble. Atenas, Costa Rica
For a year or more this is what was in the above spot:
Last year in the same location.
Then early in January these “tags” were painted with the bright turquoise at far right being where the current cartoon mice reside. I hope the other tags are overpainted too. I like the mice!
Unfortunately we have Polluted Riversin the “Green” country of Costa Rica too. Click the link for an online English newspaper article prodding the government to do more. Sad for me that this is about the Tarcoles River, the closest birding river for me and of course dangerous for the birds. The Tarcoles has tributaries coming from the big city of San Jose which is one of the problems. Be sure to see the video in the article showing all the plastic bottle caps and other junk found in the stomach of a fish. Shocking!
On 6-lane boulevard between Walmart & City Mall (mall behind trees & billboards) is this contemporary art. A metal man pushing a red metal wheel?Concentric Circles with philosophical meaning? Or just something to break up the monotony of occasional bumper to bumper traffic along here? Alajuela, Costa Rica
I photographed this Monday after Spanish Class and my bus ride to Alajuela, picking up a package at Aeropost, taking taxi to Walmart, then walking the half mile to the City Mall for lunch and a couple of items in shopping. I usually ignore this particular public art, but somehow it struck me today. On this same boulevard past the Mall is a red letter “a” (the little A) and the word “Alajuela” under it, which reminds me of the large red letters in Juan Santamaria Park spelling out “Alajuela” and that someone is trying to coordinate at least some of their public art. Interesting! ~Charlie
Aerial Video of Atenas
And back in Atenas, someone flew over Atenas in plane or helicopter at different times of day with video of the roof tops of central Atenas. Nothing is labeled or explained so not a very useful video, but if you want to see Atenas from the air: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tzqT-gEbuBc
I guess anyone can put something on youtube.
And in the right column on this blog page is a link to the most current Atenas PR Video I highly recommend!
Well, the capital city was interesting even with seeing on a small portion, but that is all the photos for now and I’m ready to get back to nature, enough of this city stuff! And I’ve got a good photo to share tomorrow, shot right here in my own garden, by best shot yet of one particular species. See ya’ tomorrow!
In the alley/back street to the back entrance of the public clinic of Atenas is this graffiti + the next photos
To the right of the above 3-pix panorama is this painting.
And around the corner on the cross alley seen when you walk out the door.
There is a lot of this kind of graffiti or “public art” in Atenas. I don’t know the origin or if someone is helping to keep kids out of trouble, or art class projects, “professional artists,” or what? But it is interesting for a small rural town and does add a lot of color to the community. If you go to the front door of the clinic you might not see these, but this door is more convenient for most of us walkers which is most of the patients!
I personally like “Public Art” for all cities and towns even when the style or images are not appealing to me. It seems prudent to me for a community to have a local committee or Art Commission as my former hometown of Nashville had to manage it, the locations, and even the nature of the art. I do not know if Atenas has such a group.