Open The Door: Captivating Houston Art Installation

Updated on April 6, 2020
Peggy W profile image

I live in Houston, and I have worked as a nurse. My interests include art, traveling, reading, gardening, cooking, and our wonderful pets.

Open The Door exhibit
Open The Door exhibit | Source

Collaborative Art Project

Open the Door was a collaborative art project between French artists and those from Texas. The painted doors were in a total of nineteen locations throughout Houston. Eagle-eyed readers of my articles might have spotted some of these doors in the post already written about the massive mural titled Preservons la Creation.

The day my husband and I visited this Houston area called Midtown, tents were still up from festivities the previous night. That was when celebrations for the inauguration of the public art exhibit Open The Door had taken place at that location. We happened upon it by chance.

These doors were in different locations throughout the Houston area. People wishing to view all of the 60 doors would have traveled to numerous sites such as Hermann Park, Texas Children’s Cancer Center, Jamail Skate Park, and Memorial City Mall. Other locations included the Houston Public Library Plaza, Lonestar College, and the Hong Kong Market, where the Vietnam War Memorial is located, among other places.

As often happens after a public art exhibit has ended, some of these exhibits are now in other locations. My husband and I spotted several of these doors in Oyster Creek Park in Sugar Land, Texas. It is fun to view them and learn about the reason they were conceived and learn more about the artists who created them.

There are still some painted fiberglass cows in evidence in some places around the Houston metro area from the Cow Parade that happened back in the year 2001. That was such a fun and successful fundraising event for Texas Children’s Hospital. Perhaps we will discover more of these painted doors in other locales as we continue exploring our beautiful city and outlying areas.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Art by Romain Froquet Other side of the door - Romain Froquet Art Art by Mambo  Mambo Art DoorMambo 247 Art Door Art Door by Lovie Olivia Other side of door by Lovie Olivia
Art by Romain Froquet
Art by Romain Froquet | Source
Other side of the door - Romain Froquet Art
Other side of the door - Romain Froquet Art | Source
Art by Mambo
Art by Mambo | Source
 Mambo Art Door
Mambo Art Door | Source
Mambo 247 Art Door
Mambo 247 Art Door | Source
Art Door by Lovie Olivia
Art Door by Lovie Olivia | Source
Other side of door by Lovie Olivia
Other side of door by Lovie Olivia | Source

French Artists

The doors were all fun to view on each side. Some had similar themes on both sides of the doors, as some of these photographs taken by me illustrate. Romain Froquet, who executed two of the doors featured above, is one of the artists from France.

Another artist from France is Flavien Demarigny, who goes by the name of Mambo.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Patrick Medrano Art Other side - Patrick Medrano Art
Patrick Medrano Art
Patrick Medrano Art | Source
Other side - Patrick Medrano Art
Other side - Patrick Medrano Art | Source

Artist Patrick Medrano

Patrick Medrano is a multi-talented artist. He creates sculptures along with many other types of art. We were first introduced to his work in a public art exhibit on Heights Boulevard in the “True North” exhibit.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Door Art by Gonzo 247 Other side - Gonzo 247 Art Door Door Art by Gonzo 247 Other side - Art by Gonzo 247
Door Art by Gonzo 247
Door Art by Gonzo 247 | Source
Other side - Gonzo 247 Art Door
Other side - Gonzo 247 Art Door | Source
Door Art by Gonzo 247
Door Art by Gonzo 247 | Source
Other side - Art by Gonzo 247
Other side - Art by Gonzo 247 | Source

Aerosol Warfare

Anyone driving past Treebeards Restaurant in downtown Houston can hardly miss the commissioned eye-popping mural on the parking lot side of the building. The Aerosol Warfare Crew created it.

Mario Enrique Figueroa, Jr. was one of the principal creators of this group. He signs his work Gonzo 247. Their graffiti type art is in numerous public places all across the Houston area.

Symbolic Meaning and Intent

Figuratively speaking, every time we open a door, endless possibilities stretch out ahead of us. We can learn, experience, and grow. Did you notice the embryos painted on the doors by Gonzo 247? Embryonic ideas can change the world for good if brought to life and put into positive actions.

Strengthening cultural awareness between Texas and France was one of the objectives of this public art project. France and the State of Texas are similar in size, with Texas being slightly larger. Twelve professional participating artists from each location took part in this art project. Professors and students were also involved.

A non-profit cultural organization called Texan-French Alliance for the Arts along with the 9eme Concept, which is a Paris art collective organized this exhibit. The debut happened in the spring of 2013, and these doors were on display for a total of two weeks.

Since that time, as already noted, these art doors are now dispersed into many other locations.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Art Door by Tierney Malone Tierney Malone Art Door Door by Jerk 45 Other side - Art Door by Jerk 45 Art by Stephane Carricondo Other side - Stephane Carricondo Art Door Door Art by ArtBridge staff & students Art by Clement Laurentin Door Art by Clement Laurentin
Art Door by Tierney Malone
Art Door by Tierney Malone | Source
Tierney Malone Art Door
Tierney Malone Art Door | Source
Door by Jerk 45
Door by Jerk 45 | Source
Other side - Art Door by Jerk 45
Other side - Art Door by Jerk 45 | Source
Art by Stephane Carricondo
Art by Stephane Carricondo | Source
Other side - Stephane Carricondo Art Door
Other side - Stephane Carricondo Art Door | Source
Door Art by ArtBridge staff & students
Door Art by ArtBridge staff & students | Source
Art by Clement Laurentin
Art by Clement Laurentin | Source
Door Art by Clement Laurentin
Door Art by Clement Laurentin | Source

Open The Door Houston Artists

Tierney Malone is one of the artists living in Houston. His works of art have been exhibited in numerous places in the U.S. and are widely collected. Some of his work is in our Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

The painting of the octopus by Houston artist Karla Morales is eye-catching.

Rahul Mitra grew up in India and now lives and works in Houston. You can read much more about this enterprising artist by clicking on a link at the end of this post.

The Graffiti art of Daniel Anguilu is in many areas around Houston. Mr. Anguilu painted an entire side of Cecil’s Pub. We have also seen his stained glass-like graffiti work on Silver Street Studios, among other places.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Art by Rahul Mitra Rahul Mitra Art Door Art by Karla Morales Daniel Anguilu Art Door Open the Door – Art by City Artworks + Elena Moya Art by Quentin Pace & Michael Martin Art by Leonardo Aguilar Open the Door Art by Linh Tran Do
Art by Rahul Mitra
Art by Rahul Mitra | Source
Rahul Mitra Art Door
Rahul Mitra Art Door | Source
Art by Karla Morales
Art by Karla Morales | Source
Daniel Anguilu Art Door
Daniel Anguilu Art Door | Source
Open the Door – Art by City Artworks + Elena Moya
Open the Door – Art by City Artworks + Elena Moya | Source
Art by Quentin Pace & Michael Martin
Art by Quentin Pace & Michael Martin | Source
Art by Leonardo Aguilar
Art by Leonardo Aguilar | Source
Open the Door Art by Linh Tran Do
Open the Door Art by Linh Tran Do | Source

Open The Door Public Art Exhibit

These doors are but a small sample of the type of art shown during this Open the Door exhibit. Their written goal of “focusing on intercultural understanding” with the hopeful result of breaking down “social barriers and cultural stereotypes” was hopefully begun. Perhaps a few cultural doors were at least cracked opened.

Enlightened leadership is spiritual if we understand spirituality not as some kind of religious dogma or ideology but as the domain of awareness where we experience values like truth, goodness, beauty, love and compassion, and also intuition, creativity, insight and focused attention.

— Deepak Chopra

Questions & Answers

    © 2020 Peggy Woods

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      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        5 days ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi FlourishAnyway,

        Many of these doors have found permanent spots in lovely parks around the Houston metro area. We have arts communities of homes in the Houston area, and I will bet that some of their front doors have some eye-catching designs. When we venture out again, post pandemic, I'll see if I can photograph some of them.

      • FlourishAnyway profile image

        FlourishAnyway 

        6 days ago from USA

        I love this funky eclectic style. It would be awesome if it were in a more permanent setting, perhaps with trees and a lake, ducks, etc. I could just imagine a neat arts neighborhood with front doors commissioned to be painted by artists. That would be grand

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        8 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Bill,

        We do embrace the arts here in Houston. I am happy to share them with you and others who may choose to come here someday. Even for those who do not, at least they can get an impression of what our area has to offer.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        8 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Ruby,

        We enjoy going to museums, but also enjoy these open-air public art exhibits. There is something for everyone in the Houston metro area!

      • bdegiulio profile image

        Bill De Giulio 

        8 weeks ago from Massachusetts

        What an interesting exhibit. Houston does a great job embracing the arts. I must say I am very impressed with your city, which I have yet to visit. And on another note, you are cranking out hubs faster than I can get to them. Keep up the great work, Peggy, I get to most of them in time.

      • always exploring profile image

        Ruby Jean Richert 

        8 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

        There is nothing I like better than going to a museum to look at beautiful paintings. I like Deepak Chopra's quote too. This was another enjoyable read.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        8 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Bill,

        I think that most of us who live here would agree with your statement. "Houston Rocks!" (Smile)

      • billybuc profile image

        Bill Holland 

        8 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

        I cannot adequately tell you how impressed I am with that city of yours. Houston Rocks!

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        8 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Liz,

        It is amazing how much public art there is in Houston and our surrounding areas. Thanks for reading my articles and being generous with your comments.

      • Eurofile profile image

        Liz Westwood 

        8 weeks ago from UK

        This is an interesting variation on a treasure trail, as there appear to be so many of these art installations around Houston.

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