Preservons la Creation is Huge Texas-Sized Houston Mural
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The old saying that “everything is bigger and better in Texas” can surely be applied to this mural in Houston titled Preservons la Creation. It is the largest to date mural in all of Houston. Located in the area called Midtown which has been designated as a cultural district by the state, it is a giant-sized addition to other forms of art found in this locale.
My husband and I happened to be driving past this location south of downtown Houston the day after the official opening, which was Saturday, June 7, 2014. We had to stop, get a closer look as well as take some photos.
Another art installation titled Open the Door had been installed on this site. It was all a part of the festivities associated with this official debut of Preservons la Creation which when translated means “Let’s Preserve the Creation.” Those other pieces of art were sold at an auction.
The auction benefits would later aid children hospitalized in a Houston as well as French children’s hospital by providing them with therapeutic art programs. Eventually, those creations made by the children would be combined and fashioned into unique murals in both hospitals.
We were fortunate to be able to see both exhibits in this one setting. Tents were still up from the night before, and a few people were mingling on the grounds.
This massive mural takes up an entire city block and has been painted on a five-story-high 30+-year-old commercial building. The dimensions are a whopping 180 feet wide by 60 feet in height.
Sebastien “Mr. D” Boileau and his two assistants, George Holder, and Erick Calvio, are the ones responsible for the painting of this huge eye-popping mural. It took almost a month of constant work to accomplish it.
Numerous benefactors also helped sponsor this project with in-kind donations and services. $90,000 is the reported amount that this mural cost and somewhere between 150 to 200 gallons of exterior paint were utilized. In addition to that, around 500 cans of spray paint were also used! All of it was donated for this massive project.
Two 65 foot boom lifts were needed by the artists to make this mural come to life.
Speaking of “life” the large god-like creature which is the focus of this mural may be somewhat familiar to those who have visited or who have seen images of the Sistine Chapel. Michelangelo painted a similar picture on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel over 500 years ago. The Creation of Adam was what Michelangelo was portraying.
“Mr. D” introduced that typical and rather well known Renaissance image and had some fun with it in this Midtown urban setting where a good amount of other street art is available to view.
Collaboration with the following entities made the production of Preservons la Creation possible.
- Midtown Management District
- Houston Arts Alliance
- Support of UP Art Studio
- Texas French Alliance for the Arts
- City of Houston Director of Cultural Affairs
All of this originally came about due to the efforts of a real estate developer by the name of Adam Brackman. Through his company called Common Ground, Mr. Brackman most often purchases properties in the Midtown area that have the potential for profitable redevelopment. Sometimes it is years before the old buildings are demolished. In the meantime, he likes to have muralists create art that enlivens the area as well as to bring attention to his structures.
Mr. Brackman contacted Sebastien Boileau to see if he would be interested in taking on this massive project. “Mr. D” was delighted to do so. What muralist would not want such a large canvas of sorts in which to portray his art!
Right across the street is another old building belonging to Mr. Brackman that is covered with colorful graffiti. It was once a Mental Health & Mental Retardation Authority building at 2850 Fannin. My husband and I have walked around this particular building and are amazed at all of the colorful street art covering it.
In one way it is sad to think that when these buildings are torn down, the art will also be destroyed. The only way to preserve the art is by capturing it in photos or videos. A fetching mural which was once located on one corner of the Houston Club Building in downtown Houston can now be viewed by clicking here.
The Heights Post Office building sported colorful murals but is now demolished. I am happy that I captured some of those images.
Sebastien Boileau has painted other notable murals in Houston, the Biscuit Wall being one of them. He was born in France. Paris was the location of some of his first street tagged walls. This self-taught artist came to Houston and established his company called Eyeful Art Murals & Designs in 1998. He likes the fact that many people in Houston genuinely enjoy all types of art, including the many forms of street art. He now makes a living from his artful creations, and we who live here benefit from it.
This mural was altered by “Mr. D” for Super Bowl 51 played here in Houston in February of 2017. The god-like figure now sports some eye black, wears a Super Bowl jersey and in place of the can of spray paint, he currently holds a football. I will try and get some updated photos to add to this post shortly.
Location of this mural is on the back of 2800 San Jacinto Street, Houston, Texas 77004. It is facing Fannin.