August 17, 2018

Sights to See: Big Art Tour, Amarillo, Texas


Big Art Tour  Amarillo has developed a sizable portfolio of large outdoor art, or macro art.  The wide open spaces available here allow for big art and for vast expanses between the artworks.  This is, after all, big sky country even though it isn't Montana.  Expect to do some searching and sleuthing to find these out-of-the way installations.

Ozymandias  Located just off I-27 south.  This installation was crafted by Lightnin’ McDuff in the mid-1990s.  Situated in a private cow pasture protected by barbed wire, these two giant legs pay homage to the namesake Egyptian king.  The work is popular with local teens, who come out here to make out, and with vandals who like to paint socks on the legs (the socks have been sandblasted off many times, only to reappear).

Ozymandias Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas
Ozymandias Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas


Signs Project by the Dynamite Museum  6 mi. from downtown.  Though it appears that the original Signs Project is defunct, a new version exists in Mariposa eco village, a 1-square-mile off-the-grid community with five structures.  One of them--a house painted in yellow-and-purple patterns and featuring an outline of Texas in cinder blocks in its front yard--is available for Air B&B stays.  And it is in this community that local artist Jon Revett resides in his rammed-earth house.

Signs Project by the Dynamite Museum Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas
Signs Project by the Dynamite Museum Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas


yellow-and-purple patterned house at Mariposa eco village in Amarillo, Texas
yellow-and-purple patterned house at Mariposa eco village in Amarillo, Texas


Big Art installation at Mariposa eco village in Amarillo, Texas
Big Art installation at Mariposa eco village in Amarillo, Texas


Floating Mesa  Located a short drive NW of town, just E of the junction of State Hwy. 1061 & State Hwy. 2381.  The highway leading to this 1981 installation by Stanley Marsh 3 continues on to Colorado and was the original trail used by cowboys herding their cattle there.  An illusion that the top portion of the mesa is floating occurs when the sun reflects just so, which happens whenever the sky is clear--with no overcast and with just the right amount of white.  Then, the line of white plywood that was inserted appears to blend in with the sky behind the mesa, and the mesa appears to be floating.

Floating Mesa Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas
Floating Mesa Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas


side view of Floating Mesa Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas
side view of Floating Mesa Big Art installation in Amarillo, Texas


Cadillac Ranch
Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas
Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas




More things to do in Amarillo.

Great ideas for travel adventures in California and the U.S. and around the world.

images ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers 

8 comments:

  1. I only saw Cadillac Ranch! I didn't realize there's more but art installations in Amarillo. We will have to return thrte.

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  2. Wow, I love road trips and this would be something right up my alley, fun!

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  3. We always enjoy roadside art installations. Thanks for taking us along on this journey to Amarillo.

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  4. I love art installations like these - it's so much fun to see them pop up in the middle of nowhere! Would love to visit Amarillo and see these in person!

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  5. I am a huge fan of public art, especially when it's unexpected or shows up in unusual places. Cadillac Ranch looks so creative and photogenic.

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  6. I've seen pictures of Cadillac Ranch before, but these other Amarillo art installations are new to me. I'd like to get a closer look at the road signs and the mesa with the floating top. Love quirky art installations!

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  7. We haven’t explored Texas much and I know we will in the upcoming years in our RV. Those cars are interesting! So thanks for inspiring me to see the outdoor art in Amarillo.

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  8. It's amazing to see the artwork out in the middle of "nowhere." I had only heard about the Cadillacs. I was pleasantly surprised there is even more art.

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