Post Date: Tuesday, March 15
Boulder is known for its stunning landscapes and natural beauty, but as locals have known for a long time, the city also has so many amazing artists and art around town too! Did you know that Boulder has the third highest concentration of artists in the country? Well, it does! (Right behind Los Angeles and Santa Fe according to National Endowments for the Arts.) To celebrate all of Boulder’s artists, the 9th annual Boulder Arts Week runs this year from March 25 to April 2, 2022. The week will feature digital and in-person arts and cultural offerings, including art walks, exhibitions, performances, dances, music, theater, public art, lectures, readings and workshops at venues throughout the city. And don’t forget to vote for your favorite student banners that are on display along Pearl Street!
One of the many Boulder Arts Week offerings this year is Street Wise Boulder’s Mural Walking Self-Guided Tour, which features 14 different murals, as well as shops and restaurants to stop at and enjoy while exploring downtown. The tour is perfectly catered for a full day to enjoy public art with local food and drinks. I decided to take the tour a little early to give you all an idea about what to expect!
Starting off is Boxcar / Cured on the East End where you can enjoy house-made pastries and an excellent cup of coffee to energize you for the journey. The next five stops are murals all in between Pearl and Pine streets and 14th and 17th streets. It’s a great beginning to the tour as the next few stops are a bit more spread out over at the West End.
Heading west, feel free to wander into the many shops downtown has to offer including the Boulder Book Store, which is the next stop of the tour. Not too far from there is a huge mural by Kendell Kipply on the 2nd and 3rd story of the West End Plaza. While walking west to the next stop you’ll be able to see a beautiful mural of a butterfly above the Conscience Bay Company building (below).
The next stop is a must-see mural by Adri Norris, which illustrates the struggle of marginalized groups to gain their rights throughout the 20th century and honors the ratification of the 19th Amendment which gave women the right to vote. After all that walking, stop in at Spruce Confections, which offers a quaint place to relax and enjoy baked goods. Once rested, head over to the 11th stop which is a mural by Shie Moreno (you’ll be walking through more of a residential area). On the corner of 7th and Pearl Street, there is a historic grocery store built in 1901 which today has become condominiums. But on the east side of the building, there is an old advertisement for Coke, which was really cool to see! Even though it’s not on the map for the tour, I highly recommend checking it out.
While walking back east to the last few stops, take the trail along Boulder Creek to enjoy nature and numerous sculptures. While on the walking tour you may notice a lot of street art on recycle/compost/trash receptacles and utility boxes by @SMiLEboulder. I absolutely love their art and find it all around the city!
After walking down the creek on Saturdays, you’ll end up at Boulder County Farmers Market, which is a great place to buy local goods. Get excited because the first day of the farmers market is April 2! Next, you'll find a relatively new mural made in 2021 by Chroma J + Remote. Finally, the last stop will take you back to the East End where you started at Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery. Perfect for grabbing a post-tour bite and brew!
I really enjoyed the mural walking tour, but there is so much more to Boulder Arts Week for you to enjoy. Find all the activities on the calendar here. I know I’m going to try to make it downtown for some of it - I hope you will too!
See you around Downtown,
Mentioned in this Post: Boulder Book Store, Boulder County Farmers Markets, Conscience Bay Company, Dedalus Wine Shop & Market, Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery, Spruce Confections, West End Plaza