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Panhandle PBS

More Time with Jason Boyett

We talk with Jason Boyett about the importance of public art in Amarillo.

More Time with Jason Boyett
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Often, the things a person does on a daily basis have a profound impact on the way they view the world. For Jason Boyett, an Amarillo native who cofounded “Brick and Elm” magazine, created and hosts the “Hey Amarillo” podcast, and serves on the city of Amarillo’s Beautification and Public Arts Advisory Board, his many projects have changed the way he sees a community he’s known his whole life.

“I drive all over the city, and every time I see a building with a big blank space I think, ‘okay, that’s a canvas,’” said Boyett.

In early 2018, Amarillo leaders formed the advisory board in an effort to visually improve the city. The board, made up of Amarillo residents, was tasked with curating ideas to enhance the city through things like art installations and landscaping. 

“What we ended up doing was launching a mural grant project that has helped businesses work with artists to put murals on their walls, and it has been very successful,” said Boyett.

In 2019, the HOODOO Mural Festival was established. This annual event, which was created completely independent of the city advisory board or the mural grant project, aims to bring public art to the community through outdoor murals painted by local and national artists.

“There’s so many opportunities, whether you’re a business involved in HOODOO, whether you apply for a mural grant, or whether you just want to work with an artist individually, independent of those things,” said Boyett. “I love when business owners, property owners, and artists get together and they just decide ‘I want to create something with this wall.’ We love to see that, and it doesn’t have to be a part of any big festival.”

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