Street art in Reno, the biggest little city

After living in Reno for a little over a year, I’ve noticed a slow grow of street art in Reno. The city is paying someone to paint new murals on parking garages, and street corners… and I like it! Walking around midtown and downtown Reno, I can’t help but notice the various murals, painted electrical boxes and fire hydrants. In fact, there are at least eighty murals scattered around the biggest little city!

Reno Arch

The Biggest Little City in the World

Reno is officially nicknamed the Biggest Little City in the World for a good reason. It is famous for its hotels, casinos, close proximity to Lake Tahoe, and of course Burning Man.

Did you know that Reno is the birth place of Harrah’s Entertainment (now known as Caesars Entertainment Group)?

Pictured on the left is the new Reno Arch that was installed in 1987 to replace the one previously erected in 1926. The Arch has also recently underwent a lightbulb change to blue, emphasizing the University of Nevada Reno Wolfpack colors. At night the sign is beautifully lit, adorning Virginia Street with its bright and warm glow.

The Super Mario Bros. Hydrant

Super Mario Fire Hydrant
Photo credit: Christian Peralta

As I explored midtown Reno, I noticed this Super Mario Brothers-themed fire hydrant (one of the many painted hydrants around town) hidden in plain sight. This Mario hydrant sat silently and did not draw much attention to itself, like many pieces of street art in Reno.

Did you know that Super Mario Bros. is often credited for resurrecting the video game industry after a market crash in 1983?

The Whitney Peak mural

Face of Reno
Christina Angelina

The Whitney Peak mural is perhaps one of my favorite murals. She is located in the city center, and has been fondly named the Face of Reno as a result. This beautiful (80 feet by 25 feet) blue lady greets pedestrians and drivers as they pass by the Whitney Peak hotel parking garage on South Virginia Street.

In fact, Christina Angelina installed our blue lady in just three days during the inaugural Sculpture Fest in Reno. The installation process also endured 30 mph winds and held up beautifully.

While Angelina has collaborated with multiple artists around the world to create wall art, she is certainly no stranger around these parts. She has been creating art installations for Burning Man since 2004, and is highlighted as one of the most innovative artists to watch in Sleek Magazine.

The Reno Mural Expo

Within a small eight block radius of the Reno downtown, lies the Reno Mural Expo. In 2017, thirty extraordinary artists (2 international, 12 national, and 16 local) participated in transforming approximately 20,000 square feet of empty walls into an outdoor urban art gallery. This resulted in many incredibly beautiful wall art that is seen all over midtown and downtown Reno.

Stay tuned…

Over the next few weeks, we will be taking a tour around town and share our experiences through the lens of the camera. Expect to see more examples of street art in Reno, architecture, and more.

Matt

Matt

Traveler, blogger, photographer and all-out badass. I'm absolutely passionate about travel, coffee, and definitely food. I spend most of my time parking at coffee shops working on projects, planning future adventures, and writing. Sometimes I write music too.

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