Gennaro’s mural on Calle 16, photo from Arte + Gennaro
A few months ago Yuri Artibise, urbanist and Arizona state coordinator of Jane’s Walk, a series of free neighborhood walking tours, asked me if I would help organize a Jane’s Walk on Calle 16. Of course I was delighted and said yes because Calle 16 is MY neighborhood. But I was also a little sad because part of the reason Yuri asked for my help was because he was moving from Phoenix to Vancouver. Yuri and his wife Linda left last weekend and have reached their destination safely. We miss you guys and wish all the best for you!
Hugo Medina working on his mural on the Calle. Photo from Calle 16 Mural Project.
Calle 16 (that’s diez-y-seis, not sixteen gringos!) is a name coined by Silvana Salcido Esparza, the chef/owner extraordinaire of Barrio Cafe on 16th Street and Thomas. It designates a Hispanic arts, culture and food district on 16th Street primarily between Thomas and McDowell.
This effort to create a Hispanic cultural district was partly galvanized in response to the passage of SB1070. Part of Silvana’s motive was to display that Hispanics in Arizona have nothing to be ashamed of and plenty to be proud of.
One way she began to define Hispanic pride on Calle 16 is through street murals painted by extraordinary artists. These murals, an effort that has only been underway for less than 9 months, have sprung up all over the west side of 16th Street like determined sunflowers and will be the centerpiece of Jane’s Walk Calle 16 this Sunday.
A detail of a mural by Joe Ray. Photo from Calle 16 Mural Project
Artist and co-founder of the Calle 16, Hugo Medina, will be with us on the walk to talk about the mural projects and future goals for the area. Other artists that might be in attendance are Lalo who’ll speak about his mural at The Hive and Barrio and Gennaro who’ll show his mural at Barrio.
Joerael Elliot’s Mural at Way Cool Hair (Photo by Claire Lawton for Jackalope Ranch)
The walk will start at Way Cool Hair on McDowell and 16th Street at 8am (early to avoid the spring/summer sun), we’ll head north on 16th Street, pointing out cool buildings (my contribution), cool murals, art studios, restaurants and other attractions until we reach the final destination at Barrio Cafe where – get this – Silvana, one of the best chefs in town, will be BBQing in front of Gennaro’s mural!Tags: 16th Street, Barrio Cafe, Calle 16, Gennaro, Get Your PHX, Hispanic artists, Hispanic cultural district, Hugo Medina, janes walk phoenix, Jane’s Walk, joe ray, Joerael, La Condesa, Lalo, murals, No Mas, phoenix, SB 1070, Silvana Salcido Esparza, The Hive, Way Cool Hair, yuri artibise