Boise Mural Art Project Aims to Turn Parking Garage into a Museum


Israel, Working on a Tribute to Mario Bros.
  • Josh Gross
  • Israel, Working on a Tribute to Mario Bros.
Over the next four days, local artists will be holed up in dank concrete basement working around the clock to turn the bottom two floors of the Idaho Building's parking garage at Ninth and Bannock, into one of the largest public art displays in the Northwest. And come Saturday morning, what was dirty and cracked gray drudgery of century-old bricks and mortar will be a buffet of color that makes Boise a more interesting place.

The project was conceptualized by Buddy Van Buren, who works for Park Lane Property Management, the company that owns the building.

"I was down there one day and just thought it would be nice to brighten up the place and put in a mural," says Van Buren. "Next thing you know, a couple people were interested. And then it just kept growing and growing."

So he brought the idea to Seth Brown, a local events promoter. And it kept growing from there. There are now over 50 different murals being painted on the site. All of them on the theme of "tribute."

"It's definitely going to make the garage a much nicer place for people to park, but it's also visible from the street, so it should draw people in as well," says Van Buren.

There will be a gala opening event on Saturday with live music and food for the public to stop in and see the newly finished works, but Brown's hope is that people will stop by to see a bit of the process as well.

"We want people to come down and watch," says Brown.

Artists will be working round the clock until Friday at midnight. Stop by. Check it out. If it goes well, Brown says there may be more sites in the future. And who couldn't use a little more color in their commute?

More pics after the cut.