Botanical Mural Project

by Pastel

Tower Plaza Building
510 2nd St. NW 

Sanitary Tortilla Factory
401 2nd St. SW

View video here

516 ARTS presents the Botanical Mural Project, featuring two new murals in Downtown Albuquerque by renowned artist Francisco Díaz (a.k.a. Pastel) from Buenos Aires, Argentina in anticipation of Cross Pollination, an exhibition later this year about bees and other pollinators and their role in the world’s food supply.

Díaz, who is both an architect and a muralist, has created murals all over the world, most recently in Italy, Portugal, Poland, Australia, Mexico and Miami. Using his distinct visual language and decorative style, he lls immense wall surfaces with patterns based on the local ora of the region. His botanical references address history, geography, society and politics, while exploring the relationships between urban art, architecture and city life.

Díaz describes his street art as “urban acupuncture,” saying: “Modern cities are full of ‘non-places’ because of irregular and not inclusive master-planning... Working with symbolism of local ora, the pieces begin a dialogue about the nature of human beings and our surroundings.” In consultation with Cross Pollination exhibition curator Valerie Roybal, Díaz chose to work with images of the following local, native plants that pollinators love: Arbutus, Senna, Phyla, Clematis, Cercocarpus, Artemisia, Aloysia, Amorpha and Mahonia.


The Botanical Mural Project consists of two mural sites:

Botanical Mural Project TF Completed lighter sky web

• Tower Building: 510 2nd St. NW The south and west facing walls at the corner of 2nd St. and MLK Blvd. across from the Convention Center dramatically showcase the work of this international artist while enhancing an otherwise drab or ‘unnoticed’ city scape. (mural size: 6,650 square feet).

• Sanitary Tortilla Factory: 401 2nd St. SW The north facing wall of the building on Lead Ave. at the corner of 2nd St. marks the public gallery for the Sanitary Tortilla Factory, which also houses artists’ studios and a sculpture residency program. This building is an anchor for the revitalization of the block of 2nd St. between Lead and Coal that is transforming into a destination for creative businesses and artists. (mural size: 640 square feet).

Francisco Díaz’s is included in the Cross Pollination gallery exhibition at 516 ARTS later this year (August 19 – October 28, 2017).

Very special thanks to project supporters J.J. Mahoney & Associates, the Sanitary Tortilla FactoryThe City of Albuquerque Public Art ProgramSherwinn-Williams, and Benjamin Moore Paints / Coronado Paint and Decorating.

Pastel Mural Logos3 

Image: Francisco Díaz, completed Botanical Mural Project, on the Sanitary Tortilla Factory in Downtown Albuquerque, part of the exhibition Cross Pollination at 516 ARTS (August 19 – October 28, 2017)