Works of Art on Wheels
Art Car Weekend rolls through Houston this month
It’s that time of year again! The Orange Show Center for Visionary Art’s Ev1.Net Art Car Weekend will be taking place May 12-14. Art Car Weekend is rooted in the creation of a “fruitmobile,” a 1967 Ford station wagon that was transformed into an extravagant work of art by local artist Jackie Harris for the Orange Show, a folk-art environment in Houston’s east end, in 1984.
After receiving much hype around the Bayou City, the Orange Show organized a road show to display the “fruitmobile” and 11 other artistically altered automobiles at the Orange Show monument. In 1987, the Houston International Festival asked the Orange Show to organize an art parade to launch the opening of the annual event. Thus, the Art Car Parade was born in 1988 and became an instant hit throughout the Houston community.
Today, Everyone’s Art Car Parade, sponsored by Everyone’s Internet, consists of more than 500 decorated parade entries on wheels that include everything from lawnmowers to cars. The once-tiny showcase, appealing to the art community, has now transformed into a three-day celebration that attracts a live audience of some 200,000 and a television audience of more than 170,000 homes. Local organizations, communities, schools and professionals have all become participants in the annual parade, which has no pre-selection process, but has grown to become artistically competitive and equally impressive.
Ev1.Net Art Car Weekend begins on Friday, May 12, with the Main Street Drag, an outreach program that gives art car artists the opportunity to visit thousands of children in area hospitals and schools. The world’s largest and oldest art car parade rolls through the streets of Houston on Saturday, May 13 at 1 p.m., followed by the Orange Show awards ceremony on Sunday, May 14, that honors the winning wheels in 17 categories.
Since its humble beginnings, Art Car Weekend has become an integral part of Houston’s art society and the city, itself. As it continues to grow in popularity, this out-of-this-world attraction in Space City brings visitors from all over.
Orange Show Center for Visionary Art
2402 Munger St.