Patrick Medrano Sculpture in “True North” Exhibit
“True North” Sculpture Exhibit in Houston
This unique ark like sculpture, created in 2014, was called “From the Hood to the Heights” by Houston artist Patrick Medrano. It was a part of the temporary “True North” sculpture exhibit found on the Heights Boulevard esplanade along with the seven other sculptures by other well known Houston artists.
These sculptures could be found between 4th and 18th street. They drew interested crowds of visitors along with local residents who were used to exercising and walking their dogs in this scenic area.
My hubby and I enjoyed strolling the wide esplanade one day and I was busy photographing all of the sculptures from various angles. Other people were doing the same and seemed to enjoy this public art display in the heart of the old Houston Heights neighborhood.
Row, row, row your boat…
Do you remember that old nursery rhyme?
The oversized paddles exiting from the openings of the proportionately smaller building sitting atop the oars is a whimsical piece by artist Patrick Medrano.
It reminded me of taking a rowboat out on Okauchee lake in Wisconsin as well as one in Minnesota many years ago when I felt the freedom of moving through the gentle lapping waves of pristine clear water by propelling the boat forward using my own energy to move the boat this direction or that.
Of course the rowboats were open and uncovered unlike this roofed sculpture.
I also remember singing that nursery rhyme with my family when I was a youngster…often over and over again!
Why was this exhibit temporary?
There is a 9 month limit currently in place for art displays on city properties. This “True North” sculpture project was planned well in advance and had to be approved by various city entities before it was installed.
It was on display until November 4, 2014.
Other artists exhibiting in “True North”
Click on the highlighted links below to see what they had created:
Reading about the artist Patrick Medrano is fascinating.
Unlike some of the other artists who had their work displayed in this same exhibit, he has no formal art degrees to tack onto his name. Yet this has not stopped this innovative artist from having his art shown in various Houston galleries as well as internationally.
His art has taken him to such places as Panama, Peru, Greece, France and Turkey among other places.
You can read Patrick Medrano’s artist statement and see some of his work by clicking on this link.
Patrick Medrano & Katy Anderson
Patrick Medrano teamed up with his wife and fellow artist Katy Anderson who primarily uses photography as her medium. Together they have collaborated on works that involve film, sculpting, painting, animation and 3D works.
Some of their work is obviously influenced by puppeteer work as well as music and dance.
Patrick Medrano and Katy Anderson established the nonprofit Fodice Foundation in 2008. They are planning to do renovations to an old East Texas stone schoolhouse built by the WPA in 1938.
The school was utilized by blacks who had originally been slaves prior to the Civil War. After desegregation it was abandoned. The extensive buildings had fallen into disrepair. The location is in an area just outside Lovelady, Texas which is approximately 45 miles northeast of Huntsville, Texas.
Medrano’s and Anderson’s dream is to establish a site where artists will be able to live and work and exhibit for periods of two months in a residency program.
It will house up to 6 artists at one time. Their foundation will also create an attraction drawing people who are interested in seeing all types of art including live performances which will aid this rather impoverished part of Texas.
I look forward to visiting there someday.
Ark or Schoolhouse?
After reading about this schoolhouse renovation, I am now looking at this sculpture with different eyes.
Instead of an ark such as Noah built, is this rather a schoolhouse?
Are the oars representing the massive job of taking this schoolhouse project of the Fodice Foundation through deep waters from initial idea to fundraising efforts and navigating through to completion? Or did the artist think of something completely different?
What “hood” is referenced in the title? What do you think?
Art for Sale
All of the exhibits in this “True North” exhibit were for sale. The prices ranged from $5,000.00 up to $28,000.00.
In case any of the sculptures are still available here is the number to call for inquiries: 713-854-4246.
Heights Boulevard in Houston, Texas & location of this exhibit as well as others that have followed the “True North” exhibit: