Not all beautiful art belongs within the cold, confined walls of a museum.
As nice as it can be to take some personal time to go and get deeply invested in a rare collection or favorite artistic legend within the educational and enriching spaces committed to it, it’s a luxury that most of us can’t afford when and where we need it – if we can afford it at all. Museums can be quite costly! Because of this, more art should exist out in the real world, where it can be therapeutic, surprising, and have more of a positive effect on everyday life.
That’s exactly what Teresa Parod was thinking when she decided to paint a mural on a garage door in one Evanston, Illinois alleyway. The point of her art is to turn the ugly and ordinary into something beautiful. Her colors transform an otherwise banal surface serving a banal purpose into a canvas for beauty, imagination, and appreciating how each moment has the potential for something special.
The mural art goes far beyond being enjoyable to the eye; it helps people reimagine new potential for things they’ve gotten used to being a certain way for too long. The creativity is palpable, and although no one can copy her, Parod hopes that others will be inspired to think of and create new ideas of their own.
Her mission has certainly been successful – after painting the first one, it wasn’t long before many others in the area wanted theirs painted, too. Although most of the supplies are provided by Parod, entire communities have gotten involved to make these largescale projects reach even further.
Today, 2300 alleys feature mural art by Parod between Thayer/Isabella and Thayer/Park.
Visitors can drive through and are encouraged to take photos and post with the hashtag #TeresaParodPublicArt.