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Uplifting Murals Going Up Downtown

More public art has gone up downtown. One is at Houston and Navarro streets, center city. Manuel Davila stopped to look at the black and white 15-feet by 10-feet mural of butterfly wings. He thinks passersby will be positively impacted.

"Perhaps it'll change their attitudes. Because it takes you away from all this violence that is taking place."

He seemed to be referencing what's going on in Paris. Not long afterwards, Austin Middleton stopped to give it a look.

"Looks pretty nice. I saw the lady out here actually doing it yesterday," he said. "She told me she was going to finish it up yesterday. And I just couldn't believe that she did all that by herself."

Denver Artist Kelsey Montague is in town to create three of these murals downtown.

"I create it, I walk away from it and it becomes the community's. It becomes the people who walk by it or people who specifically go to find it."

The objective is for people to get interactive with those murals. To see themselves in them, by taking pictures and posting them on social media.

"A lot of what I've been focusing on, especially with street art, is interactive art. So, creating a piece where people can step into the piece, get creative, whether that's jumping up into the air, whatever they want to do, and then sharing it on social media and hash-tagging specifically What Lifts You." [#whatliftsyou]

Two murals are complete--the one at Houston and Navarro, another on the north end of Travis Park. Yet another is slated for across Houston Street from the Majestic Theatre. Montague says each mural is different, each created right at the site. 

"I hand draw every mural that I work on with acrylic paint pens."

Her themes are positive and uplifting, and that's something not lost on Mr. Davila.

"Yes. Because you don't see any type of violence. No prejudice. Just happiness in the city of San Antonio."

We've more on Kelsey Montague here

Jack Morgan can be reached at jack@tpr.org and on Twitter at @JackMorganii