Welcome… to your newly renovated and most talked about dog park. This artistically beautified park will redefine your time in the grass with your own personal downtown Dallas backyard.
Deep Ellum’s latest and greatest beautification project:
On August 26th, 2011, The Deep Ellum Foundation unveiled the project that commissioned over 25 of Dallas’ most talented and amazing artists to muralize the pillars within our famous and most beloved dog park. The murals adorn all the TXDOT highway pillars within the dog park under I‐75 along Good Latimer Expressway, between Canton Street and Commerce Street. The mural images on the pillars are eleven feet high and represent the unique work of local mural artists. This addition to the ever growing permanent artwork collection within the Dallas community also includes a “memorial wall” adorned with a little piece of Dallas residents’ personal relationships with their four-legged friends. Over 25 Dallas dogs had loving owners that donated to the Bark Park project in order to have their portraits muralized on the brand new memorial wall, thus making their beloved animals a little piece of Dallas history.
The opening event featured the world famous Pam Martin with her trick performing and freestyle dancing pups, the ever-loved DJ Ez Eddie D, one of Circus Freaks most gifted light spinners, and many more. Hors d’oeuvres were catered by The Mad Hatter Café, drinks served by the fresh and fabulous Holy Kombucha, and desserts for both owners and their pups by the ever so decadent Candelaria’s Bakery.
“I feel so lucky to be part of Deep Ellum. The longer I live here, the more things that are happening. The pillars are looking great. Can’t wait to see the finished product,” said Richard Blackburn. Richard is just one of the 8,000+ fans on the Official Deep Ellum Facebook Page. Pillar Park, part of the Deep Ellum Beautification Project, is just one of the many ways that The Deep Ellum Foundation is working to leave its mark on the neighborhood.
Working side-by-side with the City of Dallas and sponsored by Glidden Professional, The Deep Ellum Foundation plans to add murals to forty-eight of the TXDOT highway pillars under I‐75 along Good Latimer Expressway, Canton Street, and Commerce Street. Thirty of these pillars have already been completed to make up Pillar Park. The mural images on the pillars are eleven feet high and represent the unique work of local mural artists.
Frank Campagna, owner of Kettle Art Gallery, was contracted to spearhead the project. Frank Campagna is a prominent name in the Deep Ellum community. Not only does he own Kettle Art, but he also is part of the Deep Ellum Community Association, as well as the Deep Ellum Enrichment Project, and he has painted an unrivaled number of murals throughout the neighborhood.
Gathered at Kettle Art Gallery for an open call for artists, Frank finally cut down the list to eleven people, including himself. The plan was to paint twenty of the pillars to look like trees, and then each artist would receive a pillar to adopt as their own creation. On September 11th, all of the artists gathered to begin an assembly line for the tree murals, each artist adding their own personal touch. Throughout the week, the individual murals were completed.
A Dallas Police Officer that is also a mural artist? Yep. Cat Lafitte, our own neighborhood Dallas Police Officer is also a recognized local artist. The Dallas Police Department sponsored a pillar that welcomes drivers as they pass under the freeway and enter the Deep Ellum neighborhood.
“It’s incredible to see how this neighborhood really comes together whenever we have a new project. I couldn’t ask for better community involvement. I’m very pleased with the outcome of Pillar Park, and we’ve only just begun,” says Barry Annino, President of the Deep Ellum Foundation. Today one can drive or walk through Pillar Park and not be surrounded by overbearing cement columns, but be encompassed by the unique artwork that we all know and love about Deep Ellum.
Pillar Park Artists: Frank Campagna, Tyson Summers, Dan Colcer, Judith Lea Perkins, Clint Scism, Isaac Davies, Jerod Davies, Richard Ross, Jose Sparks Ramirez, Amber Campagna, and Cat Lafitte.
Deep Ellum Foundation
Glidden Professional Paint
Deep Ellum Community Association
Deep Ellum Enrichment Project
Above: David Rodriguez, one of the Art Park artists, in action. All photos courtesy of Carolyn Collins.
Dallas, TX – A Ribbon Cutting event will welcome the new public artwork to Deep Ellum’s Art Park on Saturday, September 12th. From 2-4 pm, the Deep Ellum Foundation invites artists, residents, and visitors to enjoy more than 30 new outdoor paintings. The concrete sculptures that have greeted visitors since the mid 90s have been repainted for the first time in over a decade.
Immediately following the DART Super Saturday event a few blocks over, the Deep Ellum Foundation will host the Art Park Ribbon Cutting. Art Park is located along Commerce Street, Canton Street, and Good Latimer Expressway under Interstate 75. Just walk across Good Latimer from Bark Park Central.
Thanks to funding from the Farmers Market Tax Increment Financing District, the entire Deep Ellum Connector is getting a makeover. The lights that illuminate the sculptures after dark are the result of electrical repairs to Art Park’s lighting system. The lights have not worked for years, but now they shine brightly on the new paintings.The Deep Ellum Foundation is also working with the Texas Department of Transportation to add mural paintings to many of the highway columns under Interstate 75 as the next phase of the Art Park project.
“The lighting improvements were critical to light the artwork at night and to increase public safety in the area,” says longtime Deep Ellum developer, John Miller of PlanB Development, who is a member of both the Farmers Market and Deep Ellum TIF boards.
“The benefit of the art installation goes a long way in connecting the Farmers Market community to Deep Ellum.”
The Deep Ellum Foundation organized a contest to select the new images for Art Park. A selection panel reviewed the 60 plus submissions and selected a variety of styles, colors and imagery to adorn the sculptures for years to come.
Jasmine Donnell, a Deep Ellum resident and local artist, painted a sculpture that happens to be one block from where she lives.
“There are so many talented artists in the Deep Ellum community, I was honored to have been chosen. Most of my art is normally just viewed by friends, family and clients through my work. So, it’s personally gratifying to have my art displayed in the neighborhood I live in, for the people I admire the most,” explains Donnell.
Michael Lagocki’s image reflects a character he calls Haley. He is glad to share her love with Deep Ellum.
“Outdoor art is about sharing something with the community. My intent with my piece was to bless the neighborhood, maybe put a smile on a few faces, and share a positive emotion.”
The project did, indeed, connect the community. Passersby stopped to ask what was going on, and to watch the artists in actions. Many residents taking their dogs for a stroll in Bark Park Central walked over to say hello. Some interested onlookers even staked out for hours.
Many of the participating artists will be on hand at the Art Park Ribbon Cutting to answer questions about their pieces and listen to feedback from the community. The Deep Ellum Foundation invites everyone to come enjoy some refreshments and take in the new scenery.
For more information about the Art Park Ribbon Cutting, please contact:
Lee Ann Stone
Deep Ellum Foundation
Club Dada 2720 Elm Street