What’s Going On With The Wall At Blue Sky In Amarillo?
A couple of weeks ago, I was driving along the access road at Bell St to get on to I-40 as I was leaving work. Normally, I'd hop on the highway right there and start my journey home. Unfortunately, they had the on-ramp there closed as they were doing some construction (of course they were).
So I had to shoot down the access road to hop on the highway at a different point. This forced me past Blue Sky which typically just makes me hungry, but this time it was more intrigue that hit me.
I saw a few people over by the iconic Blue Sky mural and noticed it appeared they were doing some work on it. I chalked it up to them just refreshing the mural and making the colors a bit more vibrant. Well, I was wrong. They were actually in the midst of recreating the entire thing!
Why would they want to do such a thing? I mean, everyone knows that mural and it's a staple in Amarillo. There's a good reason for the recreation though. You might remember back around the middle of May, someone came flying off the offramp there and slammed into the side of the building. Well, that ended up not only damaging the building but obviously damaging the mural on it.
They finally finished up the work on the wall of the building on August 31, and that very next day, longtime artist Rex Wilt began work on the recreation of the mural.
Shortly after beginning the project, Wilt enlisted the help of West Texas A&M fine art professor Michael Longhofer. He knew he would be able to assist him and his wife in making the mural as close to the original one as possible.
The original creator of the mural, a well-known Amarillo street artist who was simply known as "Jonas", has passed on so he couldn't bring him back into the project.
They are going to keep the same theme of what the original mural was, Palo Duro Canyon. However, there are going to be a couple of small added things to the mural. It'll be fun to look at it when it's all finished. In the meantime, you can drive by or stop in to see them working on the mural and how the progress is coming along.