Houston’s Downtown District Partners With UP Art Studio for Mural Open Call

by Christopher Blay December 19, 2019

Sarah Welch’s Commute, on view through December, 2019 for Art Blocks, Downtown Houston.

The Houston Downtown Management District (Downtown District) is partnering with UP Art Studio, bringing UP Art’s  “Mini Murals” program to Main Street in downtown Houston. The mini murals will be applied to traffic signal control cabinets as part of Downtown District’s Art Blocks program, which we’ve featured here. The UP Art open call ends Sunday, January 26, 2020, and both Downtown District and UP will select 18 qualifying artists for the Main Street Mini Murals to be featured along the METRORail line between Franklin Street in the Historic District and St. Joseph Parkway in Southern Downtown. Applicants will be notified of results the week of February 10.

“One of the most gratifying aspects of the Art Blocks initiative, which launched in 2016, has been the opportunity to partner with local artists on works that figure into Houstonians’ everyday experience of the Downtown streetscape,” says Angie Bertinot, the Downtown District’s director of marketing and communications. “Due to the new residential properties, hotels, major office towers and diversity of restaurants and bars lining Main Street, the renewed energy and pedestrian activity provides the perfect setting to showcase UP Art Studio’s mini murals program.”


The temporary projects (displayed for up to three years) will transform artists submission into vinyl applied to the cabinets — a format which, along with visual artists, encourages photographers and graphic designers to apply. The selected artists will also be added to a registry for future projects managed by UP Art Studio.

For more information about Art Blocks and related programming, please visit the website here. For more information about Mini Murals, please go here.


UP Art Studio is a Houston, Texas-based design-house that facilitates art and design projects for urban and contemporary artists, communities, corporations, and municipalities. The studio’s mission is “Civic Pride through Civic Art”, and they work on projects that educate, move and engage communities through public art. UP Art Studio was founded in 2012 by Noah and Elia Quiles, a husband and wife team passionate about public art.


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