Austin Street Art Walk, Austin

Austin Street Art Walk (Self Guided), Austin

Austin, Texas may be famed as the “Live Music Capital of the World,” but its street art is just as vibrant, funky, and diverse as its plentiful music venues. Indeed, Texas’s capital is practically peppered with dozens of murals, sometimes in the most unexpected places.

Among the artworks gracing the city's walls there are some truly iconic pieces that illustrate the kinky side of the city to a tee. They represent a mix of both commissioned work and unsanctioned drawings, with the latter surviving largely due to widespread public support which turned Austin into a thriving space for aspiring artists.

One of the most famous spots for street art in the city is East 6th Street, featuring a mesmerizing array of murals and graffiti that reflect the city's eclectic and artistic spirit. Here, artists have transformed the walls into a dynamic canvas that showcases their creative prowess.

The "Spaceman with Floating Pizza" mural is another eye-catching masterpiece that captures the imagination. This whimsical piece blends elements of science fiction and culinary delight, creating a surreal and intriguing visual experience.

For those with a taste for the surreal, the "Human-Insect Hybrid" mural offers a thought-provoking exploration of the boundaries between the natural and the fantastical. This artwork sparks contemplation on the intricate relationship between humanity and the natural world.

The "Hi, How Are You?" mural is an iconic piece featuring a frog-like character created by the legendary musician Daniel Johnston. It has become a symbol of Austin's quirky and welcoming culture.

The "Austintatious" mural is a vibrant celebration of the city's lively spirit and its reputation for being a hub of creativity. It showcases the artistic energy that permeates Austin's streets.

Additionally, "Music Legends on The Drag" murals pay homage to the rich musical heritage of Austin, featuring iconic musicians who have left an indelible mark on the city's music scene.

To fully immerse yourself in Austin's street art, you can explore it on your own using this self-guided walking tour. You'll be treated to an array of visual delights that add a unique and colorful flavor to the city's cultural landscape.
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Austin Street Art Walk Map

Guide Name: Austin Street Art Walk
Guide Location: USA » Austin (See other walking tours in Austin)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 Km or 2.1 Miles
Author: christine
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Historic 6th Street Mural
  • "Spaceman with Floating Pizza" Mural
  • "Human-Insect Hybrid" Mural
  • "Hi, How Are You?" Mural
  • "Austintatious" Mural
  • "Music Legends on The Drag" Murals
Historic 6th Street Mural

1) Historic 6th Street Mural

The Historic 6th Street Mural in downtown Austin is a vibrant and captivating piece of art that truly embodies the city's spirit as the “Live Music Capital of the World.” Located off the Southbound Interstate 35 access road, this mural is an unmissable landmark for anyone visiting 6th Street in Austin.

Created in 2012 by Sanctuary Printshop, the mural is a rich tapestry of Austin's unique characteristics. It celebrates the city's rich history and its renowned music scene, effectively capturing the essence of what makes Austin so special. The use of vivid colors and engaging designs in the mural reflects the city's lively and dynamic atmosphere.

Not only is the Historic 6th Street Mural a tribute to Austin's cultural heritage, but it has also become a popular spot for tourists and locals alike. It's a perfect backdrop for those seeking an "Insta-worthy" photo, adding a touch of Austin's vibrant culture to any social media feed.

However, visitors should exercise caution when attempting to take photos of the mural. Its location near a busy intersection from a highway feeder requires careful crossing of the street. Despite this, the effort is well worth it, as the mural provides a visual feast and a deeper understanding of Austin's lively spirit.
"Spaceman with Floating Pizza" Mural

2) "Spaceman with Floating Pizza" Mural

"Spaceman with Floating Pizza" mural, located in Austin, was created by the artist Mike "Truth" Johnston, a former school teacher turned full-time artist. Johnston has gained recognition in Austin for his eclectic and vibrant artwork, which encompasses a variety of subjects and mediums, from street art to commissioned pieces.

His work is a familiar sight around the city, adorning numerous murals and even featured on the sides of Google Fiber vans. Apart from these, he also engages in crafting posters using wheat paste, a technique popular in street art for its ease of use and temporary nature.

Johnston's "Spaceman with Floating Pizza" mural captures the essence of his artistic style – whimsical, colorful, and engaging, blending elements of pop culture with a hint of surrealism. This mural, like many of his works, reflects a unique blend of creativity and humor, making it a beloved part of Austin's vibrant street art scene.
"Human-Insect Hybrid" Mural

3) "Human-Insect Hybrid" Mural

The "Human-Insect Hybrid" mural in Austin, USA, is a striking and meticulously crafted piece of street art by Puerto Rican artist Ana Maria, also known as Ana Marietta. Unveiled during the 2015 South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, this mural showcases Ana Maria's unique artistic style, characterized by the fusion of human and insect anatomical elements.

Ana Maria's background in animal sciences, which she studied at the University of Puerto Rico, profoundly influences her work. This academic foundation in biology, especially entomology (the study of insects), is evident in the mural. Her knowledge allows her to blend human and insect features with astonishing accuracy and detail, creating humanoid creatures that are both fascinating and surreal.

The mural stands out for its intricate detailing and the artist's ability to convey the complex textures and structures of both human and insect bodies. This blend not only demonstrates her technical skill but also her deep understanding of the subject matter, making the mural a thought-provoking piece that invites viewers to ponder the relationship between humans and the natural world.

The "Human-Insect Hybrid" mural remains a notable addition to the vibrant street art scene in Austin, reflecting both the city's cultural diversity and its openness to innovative artistic expressions.
"Hi, How Are You?" Mural

4) "Hi, How Are You?" Mural

Ask anyone to name a mural associated with Austin, and chances are they will say, “Hi, How Are You?” This simple talking frog painted on the side of the former music store, now Thai restaurant, near the University of Texas campus, is one of the most beloved murals in Austin. The iconic piece was created by Daniel Johnston, who is also a musician, in 1993. Named “Jeremiah the Innocent,” it was originally created at the request of the record store Sound Exchange. People erroneously believed the frog was named after the bullfrog in the Three Dog Night song “Joy to the World”, until in a 2016 interview Johnston revealed that it was the press that came up with that name. As for the mural itself, it is a variation of the frog image that the artist drew as a cover for his 1983 eponymous “Hi, How Are You?” album.

The artwork gained worldwide acclaim when Kurt Cobain put on a T-shirt emblazoned with the image during his 1991 promotional tour. The Frog eventually appeared in Rolling Stone magazine and has been a fixture on the Drag ever since, surviving building remodels and the occasional prankster vandalism. The friendly-looking amphibian has spawned an entire industry around it and in 2014 was declared a cultural landmark. The mural is now lovingly preserved by the current “Thai, How Are You?” restaurant owner.
"Austintatious" Mural

5) "Austintatious" Mural

If you only have time to check out just one mural in Austin, the “Austintatious” mural, also known as the Stephen F. Austin mural, should be it. Located at the 23rd Street Artists’ Market on Guadalupe Street, which is an outdoor area with booths selling locally made art, jewelry, clothing, leather goods and various oddities surrounded by the student oriented Drag shopping strip directly across from the University of Texas, it is indeed a sort of a touchstone for guests of Austin.

This was one of the first outdoor murals in the city, first painted in 1974 by a group of friends including artist/comedian/musician Kerry Awn, Tom Bauman and Rick Turner, collectively known as the “Austintatious Artists”. In essence, the massive mural represents a comical walkthrough of Austin’s history and culture. Among the depicted highlights here are the landmarks of downtown Austin, such as the Texas Capitol, the UT Tower and the Ritz Theater on the one side, and those of the entire state of Texas on the other.

The artists painted the wall white and then projected a comic book drawing onto it, which they traced with charcoal. They then filled in the colors and details with help from their friends, including muralist Jim Franklin, who painted the armadillos held by Stephen F. Austin in the center.

The mural was vandalized in 2014, but the original artists weren't ready to let their work fade into history just yet, so they raised funds, rented a power washer and painstakingly restored the mural themselves.
"Music Legends on The Drag" Murals

6) "Music Legends on The Drag" Murals

"Music Legends on The Drag" murals are a visual tribute to the world of rock stars and movies, located in the vibrant heart of Austin's cultural landscape. These murals are just a block away from the renowned Austintatious Mural, positioned at the strategic corner of 24th and Guadalupe.

One of the murals is a movie-themed artwork that adorns the old Intellectual Property / Tower Records building. This mural stands out for its sheer size and cinematic theme, making it a focal point in the area. The other mural, equally captivating but with a different aesthetic, is found on the side of the Wells Fargo Bank, previously the GAP building. This particular mural is known for its dreamlike and warped artistic style, offering a contrast to the movie-themed piece.

At street level of the old Tower Records building, visitors and locals alike are treated to a series of stencil-based artworks. These pieces, created by Federico Archuleta, a prolific Austin artist, celebrate famous rock stars. Archuleta's work is renowned for its detailed and iconic stencil style, which adds a unique flavor to the Austin street art scene.

Together, these murals not only beautify the urban landscape but also serve as a testament to Austin's deep-rooted love for music and arts. They reflect the city's vibrant cultural heritage and continue to attract admirers from all over, adding to the rich tapestry of Austin's artistic offerings.

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