New murals add more life to City Heights!

More fantastic street murals have been popping up in City Heights!

Artists have been painting all sorts of new murals along University Avenue, primarily between I-805 and I-15. Most have been created for #theavenuemuralproject. According to Carlos Quezada of Love City Heights, brand new murals have been debuting almost every month!

On Sunday I was shown a bunch that were recently completed. Each new mural uniquely enriches this proud, culturally diverse community. Artists, volunteers and neighbors have been coming together one wall at a time to make a positive difference for all.

And the future is bright! The stretch of University Avenue between I-805 and I-15 is a growing “drive-through” art gallery with truly unlimited potential. Muralists of local, national and even international renown are showing an interest in City Heights.

Victor Ochoa, one of the world’s most famous muralists, a pioneer of San Diego’s Chicano art movement, will be creating an amazing new masterpiece on University Avenue later this year!

To see some of these new murals, check out my previous two blog posts.

The following photographs show even more!

A cool new mural on University Avenue in City Heights, created by Beth Emmerich, with the assistance of other great street artists.
A cool new mural on University Avenue in City Heights, created by Beth Emmerich, with the assistance of several other great street artists.

This abstract mural is titled UnPerfect, by Walker Matthews, Carlos Quezada and Edwin Lohr.
This abstract mural is titled UnPerfect, by Walker Matthews, Carlos Quezada and Edwin Lohr.
LOVE CITY HEIGHTS
LOVE CITY HEIGHTS
Left end of a long mural on University Avenue near 50th Street. It faces a new park-like community gathering place across University. Created by @illumihaadi and local youth, with support from City Heights CDC and City Heights Business Association. The neighborhood is home to many Somalis.
Left end of a long mural on University Avenue near 50th Street. It faces a new park-like community gathering place. Created by @illumihaadi and local youth, with support from City Heights CDC and City Heights Business Association. The neighborhood is home to many Somalis.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

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New muralist in San Diego makes her debut!

Naomi GonzalezMartinez (to the right) poses by her new mural in City Heights with her artistic mentor Brise Birdsong.
Naomi GonzalezMartinez (to the right) poses by her new mural in City Heights with her artistic mentor Brise Birdsong.

Today I met San Diego’s newest muralist!

Naomi GonzalezMartinez has painted a colorful mural for #theavenuemuralproject on University Avenue in City Heights. Please check out her new Instagram page!

Guided by Carlos Quezada of Love City Heights, I was able to meet Naomi and enjoy her artwork during a tour of several new street murals along University Avenue. Love City Heights is a group of community leaders working to enliven this culturally diverse San Diego neighborhood.

Naomi’s first mural was created with a little help from her mentor Brise Birdsong, a prolific local artist and muralist whose often humorous street art I stumble upon from time to time during my walks around San Diego.

Naomi told me a little about the mural, and the symbolism that it contains. Her family is very important to her, and being of Mayan descent, she incorporated the Mayan logogram that represents a companion spirit. You can see it in the following photograph at the center of the lower tea cup. The next cup up contains elements representing Korea, a place that is special to her. The third cup up contains colors from both the Mexican and American flags.

Other designs in the mural like the flowers and butterfly? Painted just for fun!

A very cool new work of art brightens City Heights!

The colorful mural contains diverse symbols that hold special meaning for the artist.
The colorful mural contains diverse symbols that hold special meaning for the artist.
Naomi GonzalezMartinez poses by her delightful City Heights mural with her family!
Naomi GonzalezMartinez poses by her new City Heights mural with her family!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Fun mosaic sculptures at IB’s Peoples Park!

Peoples Park in Imperial Beach is now over two years old.

In 2016, residents of IB volunteered their skills, labor and love, and helped 4 Walls International create this fun, relaxed park on Seacoast Drive.

There are benches, planters and curving pathways, but the highlight of the park is a group of colorful, organic sculptures. Some appear to me like sea snails; others, as you can see, are turtles!

Decorating the surface of these mosaic sculptures are bits of broken tile and other small treasures, like beads and seashells.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Samples of fascinating architecture in San Diego.

The San Diego Architectural Foundation’s 2019 OPEN HOUSE SAN DIEGO event is coming in two weeks! The public will be invited to freely tour over 100 locations around San Diego. Some of the tours will provide behind-the-scenes looks at some truly unique and fascinating architecture.

In anticipation of the big event, I thought I’d recall a few past blogs posts that concern architecture in San Diego. Most of these posts are from OPEN HOUSE tours in the past couple years.

Click the following links to enjoy:

An architectural masterpiece in San Diego.

A short architectural tour of the Santa Fe Depot.

Architecture and light at Timken Museum of Art.

A quick peek inside St. Paul’s Cathedral.

A tour inside the historic Spreckels Theatre.

Photos behind the scenes at Copley Symphony Hall!

Elegance and history at downtown San Diego hotel.

History comes alive during tour of Spanish Village.

Salk Institute architect Louis Kahn: an amazing exhibit!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

One very cool “San Diego” graffiti mural!

A very cool graffiti-style "San Diego" mural at 20th Street and Imperial Avenue painted by Dyse One.
The very cool “San Diego” mural at 20th Street and Imperial Avenue painted by Dyse One.

Check out this cool mural painted on the south side of the Universal Radiator building at 20th Street and Imperial Avenue. Local artist and clothing designer Dyse One spray painted an immense “San Diego” in an elegant graffiti style!

The west side of the same building was painted by Dyse One and Haslr, and contains elements that represent America’s Finest City. I see images of the Coronado Bridge, a trolley, and the Padres’ mascot, the Swinging Friar!

Very cool!

A mural on another side of the same building pays tribute to America's Finest City. By street artists Dyse One and Haslr.
A cool mural on the west side of the same building pays tribute to America’s Finest City. By street artists Dyse One and Haslr.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Photos of historic “Book Pass” in Mission Hills!

Community members line a sidewalk in Mission Hills, passing books from their old home to a brand new branch library!
Community members line a sidewalk in Mission Hills, passing books from old shelves to a brand new branch library!

A very exciting and historic event took place this morning in Mission Hills! Hundreds of people lined the West Washington Street sidewalk to pass books from the old, now closed Mission Hills Branch Library to the beautiful, larger, brand new Mission Hills-Hillcrest/Harley & Bessie Knox Library!

The final 200 books from the old branch library were transferred along the sidewalk, hand-to-hand, by volunteer participants. Some were dressed as favorite book characters. All eyes glanced at the passing titles, and many smiles resulted!

Once every book had been transported to its new home, a Grand Opening ceremony was held in front of the new Mission Hills-Hillcrest Branch Library. When the speeches were complete, community members streamed into the new building!

The very last book to be passed was The Hobbit. It was selected in a poll to make the fantastic journey.

And onward into the future we go!

“Go back?” he thought. “No good at all! Go sideways? Impossible! Go forward? Only thing to do! On we go!”

–Bilbo Baggins

Volunteers for the Book Pass gather in front of the new Mission Hills-Hillcrest-Harley & Bessie Knox Library.
Volunteers for the Book Pass gather in front of the new Mission Hills-Hillcrest/Harley & Bessie Knox Library.
Those who will participate in the historic Book Pass, wearing yellow scarves, fan out along seven blocks of West Washington Street in Mission Hills.
Those who will participate in the historic Book Pass, wearing yellow scarves, fan out along seven blocks of West Washington Street in Mission Hills.
Members of the Book Brigade are getting ready on Block 3.
Members of the Book Brigade are getting ready on Block 3.
Someone reads while waiting for the Book Pass to begin.
Someone reads while waiting for the Book Pass to begin.
Look who I spotted! It's Balboa Park's Ranger Kim, with his cool new children's book!
Look! It’s Balboa Park’s Ranger Kim Duclo, with his cool new children’s book!
This persons favorite book is Peter Benchley's Jaws!
This person’s favorite book is Peter Benchley’s Jaws!
I spotted Cruella de Vil, Maleficent and Captain Hook!
I spotted Cruella de Vil, Maleficent and Captain Hook!
Here comes Professor Trelawney!
Here comes Professor Trelawney!
Near the old Mission Hills Branch Library, the Book Pass is almost ready to begin.
Near the brand new Mission Hills-Hillcrest Branch Library, the Book Pass is almost ready to begin.
Volunteers are lined up, awaiting the first book!
Volunteers are lined up by the old branch library, awaiting the first book!
Cameras ready!
Cameras ready!
A fun moment in history is about to begin...
A fun moment in history is about to begin…
The final 200 books in the now closed branch library will be passed from hand to hand to the new Mission Hills Library.
The final 200 books in the now closed branch library will be passed from hand to hand to the brand new Mission Hills-Hillcrest Library.
Here they are!
Here they are on a book cart!
Empty shelves are all that's left in the old Mission Hill Library.
Empty shelves are all that’s left in the old Mission Hills Branch Library.
Here comes the first book in the Book Pass!
And here comes the very first book in the Book Pass!
Doing the wave! Too much excitement!
Doing the wave! Too much excitement!
Library books are transported by the hands of those who love to read to their new home.
Library books are transported by the hands of those who love to read to their new home.
The books head east through Mission Hills.
The books head east through Mission Hills.
Here they come!
Here they come!
People pause to look at titles as the books are passed along.
People pause to look at titles as the books are passed along. Most of the books are classic works of World Literature.
The cart is almost halfway empty!
Very quickly the cart is almost half emptied!
The smiling Bike Brigade showed up to transport some books!
The smiling Bike Brigade showed up to transport a few books!
There it is! The final book of the Book Pass is waiting at the bottom of this stack. The Hobbit!
There it is! The final book of the Book Pass is waiting at the bottom of this stack. The Hobbit! (It happens to be one of my favorites!)
The final 25 books represent the 25 most checked-out books in the history of the Mission Hills Branch Library. I noticed several were by Dr. Seuss.
The final 25 books represent the 25 most checked-out books in the history of the old, now closed Mission Hills Branch Library. I noticed several were by Dr. Seuss.
Finally, it's J. R. R. Tolkien's beloved novel The Hobbit.
Finally, it’s J. R. R. Tolkien’s beloved fantasy novel The Hobbit.
Bilbo Baggins has embarked on another journey. The Hobbit makes it's way to the brand new Mission Hills Library.
It seems Bilbo Baggins has embarked on another journey. The Hobbit makes it’s way to the brand new Mission Hills-Hillcrest Branch Library.
Friends and neighbors are excited to be a part of history in San Diego.
Friends and neighbors are excited to be a part of history in San Diego.
A kid hurries across an intersection with The Hobbit!
A happy kid hurries across an intersection with The Hobbit!
Everyone holds up The Hobbit as many photographs are taken.
Everyone holds up The Hobbit as many photographs are taken.
One of many wonderful Book Pass memories for hundreds of volunteers.
One of many wonderful Book Pass memories for hundreds of participants.
A huge crowd accompanies The Hobbit across another intersection as the Book Pass approaches the new branch library.
A huge crowd accompanies The Hobbit across another intersection as the Book Pass approaches the new branch library.
The beautiful new Mission Hills-Hillcrest/Harley & Bessie Knox Library is now in sight!
The beautiful new Mission Hills-Hillcrest/Harley & Bessie Knox Library is now in sight!
San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer poses with some kids for a photo.
San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer poses with some kids for a photo.
The Hobbit is approaching its new library home!
The Hobbit is approaching its new library home!
A favorite book held high for all to see!
A favorite book held high for all to see!
One last book and the historic Book Pass transfer will be complete.
One last book and the historic Book Pass transfer will be complete.
Many have gathered for the ceremony at the new Mission Hills-Hillcrest Branch Library.
Many have gathered for the Grand Opening ceremony at the new Mission Hills-Hillcrest/Harley & Bessie Knox Branch Library.
The Hobbit has reached its new home.
The Hobbit has reached its new home.
Speeches begin. The Mayor of San Diego addresses a large crowd. The new library is finally ready to open.
Speeches begin. The Mayor of San Diego addresses a large crowd. The beautiful new library, which was built in the Craftsman architectural style, is finally ready to open.
People eagerly head into the brand new Mission Hills Branch Library!
People eagerly head into the brand new Mission Hills-Hillcrest Branch Library!
On we go!
On we go!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Artwork next to 25th and Commercial trolley station.

Metal artwork at the 25th and Commercial trolley station honors labor leader and civil rights activist Cesar Chavez.
Metal artwork at the 25th and Commercial trolley station honors labor leader and civil rights activist Cesar Chavez.

While riding the Orange Line of the San Diego Trolley, I noticed several works of cool art in and around the 25th and Commercial station. So I jumped off, walked around and took photos!

The metalwork that honors Cesar Chavez can be found at the westbound platform. The 25th and Commercial trolley station is dedicated to the civil rights leader.

You might recall that both platforms of the split station also feature amazing tile mosaic benches. I posted those photos here.

We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community. --Cesar E. Chavez
We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community. –Cesar E. Chavez
A sign at the trolley station points to various locations of interest, including Villa Montezuma and Chicano Park.
A sign at the trolley station points to various locations of interest, including Villa Montezuma and Chicano Park.
A metal Don Quixote stands guard by a muffler shop.
A metal Don Quixote stands guard at a nearby muffler shop.
Colorful artwork on the back of the San Diego Police Department Central Division parking garage.
Colorful artwork on the back of the San Diego Police Department Central Division parking garage.
Cool street art on a corner utility box.
Mesoamerican iconography becomes street art on a corner utility box.
A fun heart in a mural on a neighborhood wall.
A fun heart in a mural on a nearby wall.
A cool car painted on a fence along Commercial Street in Logan Heights.
A cool car painted on a fence along Commercial Street in Logan Heights.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!