Although some consider Roosevelt Row the epicenter of murals in metro Phoenix, this year’s top picks illustrate the fact that great murals are always going up throughout the Valley. Mural artists found inspiration in a myriad of places this year, including music, desert wildlife, and justice for indigenous women. Here’s a look at 10 of our favorites, which reveal the diverse aesthetics of some of the region’s best-loved muralists and street artists.
Isaac Caruso painted this massive mural at Chicano Por La Causa. The mural is located on an east-facing wall at 6850 West Indian School Road. The mural depicts several family members anchored by a young child. The mural measures 90 feet wide and 20 feet tall. At the top center of the piece, the artist wrote, "Sí, Se Puede."
La Morena painted this mural in an alley just east of The Churchill, located at 901 North First Street. It’s part of a collaborative project called the 1 1/2 Street Project, which includes works by several of Phoenix’s most popular muralists. The mural, which includes the words “No more stolen sisters,” raises awareness about missing and murdered indigenous women.
Breeze, Duane Manuel, and Thundr1
A trio of indigenous artists with distinctive styles painted this mural located in Mesa. The piece reflects the Native identity of the Salt River and Gila River communities. The mural, located on Cherry Street south of University Drive, includes both abstract designs and figurative work. The line work by Thomas “Breeze” Marcus reflects elaborate basketry designs.
Miguel Angel Godoy
Miguel Angel Godoy painted a cheerful array of desert plants as part of a larger collaborative work that also includes several images that reference the history of the region. The majority of the mural, which is located on Grant Street west of Seventh Street, was painted between March and October. It enlivens the surrounding warehouse district.
Geremy Cites painted a series of animals on unused structures along a portion of the Melrose Curve. His owl, quail, and jackalope figures are outlined in black and set against hot pink backdrops. They’re situated next to Stacy’s @ Melrose at 4343 East Seventh Avenue, where the artist painted a desert backdrop centered by a pair of rainbow-colored wings.
Several artists who work together under the name Graffaholeks Crew painted a giant portrait of a woman wearing rose-colored sunglasses, flanked by bold designs. It’s located on the south side of the Mia’s Flowers building at 1612 North 16th Street, which sits at the intersection with McDowell Road.
Jeff Slim painted this mural pairing desert botanicals and references to reading on a wall along the parking lot behind Palabras Bilingual Bookstore, which is located at 1738 East McDowell Road in the "Miracle Mile" part of Phoenix. The mural includes a figure based on one of the bookstore’s ardent supporters.
Not Another Bird Mural in Phoenix
Kayla Newnam transformed a parking garage into a giant canvas with this work, which is anchored by a peacock that measures 26 feet high and 40 feet wide. The mural’s title references previous bird murals painted in the area, by artists including Brian Boner and Lauren Lee. The mural is located on Roosevelt Street east of Central Avenue. It features distinctive iconography reflecting social media culture.
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Maggie Keane created a giant homage to the musician Prince in the Grand Avenue arts and historic preservation district. It’s located on an exterior wall for Rodriguez Boxing Club, which is located at 1350 West Roosevelt Street. The mural features several images of the iconic musical artist, including one that includes sunglasses made with 36-inch mirrors.
Osiris Rain painted this private-commission mural in May. Like many of his artworks, the piece was inspired by immigrant rights. The mural is located near Fourth Street and Southern Avenue. The design features Rain's characteristic mix of portraiture and geometric designs.