A Tour of Raasin in the Sun’s East Austin Murals
Raasin McIntosh takes us through her organization’s community-focused urban beautification projects
By Raasin McIntosh
Photos courtesy of Raasin in the Sun
Raasin in the Sun brings communities together through cultural arts and environmental initiatives. The nonprofit has launched many urban beautification projects and partnered with local artists to make incredible murals in East Austin since 2015, when it was founded by Raasin McIntosh. McIntosh recently put together a list of some of her organization’s most notable murals over the years. Learn more about the artists and vast impact of these eastside projects below:
Location: 2011 E M. Franklin Ave Austin, Texas
Artist: Niz G
Partner: Franklin Common
Recognizing that sharing East Austin’s history is important in times of rapid change, this project aims to bring culture awareness among all residents and all races. The Resilience Project highlights the contributions of African Americans through a hyperlocal lens, honoring the authentic culture of the area: E.M. Franklin Avenue, Manor Road, Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Springdale, 12th Street and Airport Boulevard. “Resilience” is spelled out with images of these community trailblazers stenciled by artist Niz G, honoring the history and culture.
Location: 1111 E. 11th St. #150
Artist: Dwight White
Partner: Charm School Vintage
Inspired by the famous quote, “I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.” This mural is a tribute to Angela Davis, an African American female prominent civil rights-era writer, educator and activist who advocated for an end to racial oppression in the United States.
Location: Underpass at N. Lamar Blvd. Service Rd. and W. 3rd St.
Artists: Uloang, Kimie Flores, Samara Barks, Carmen Rangel, Niz and Rex Hamilton
Partners: City of Austin Economic Development Department, Art in Public Places and Austin Civilian Conservation Corps
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the purpose of the project is to share positive, uplifting and/or informative messages to promote physical and mental health. It is our hope that these murals will be a gentle reminder for us all.
Location: 498-418 San Marcos St.
Artists: Kimie Flores, Carmen Rangel
Partners: Saltillo and Endeavor Real Estate
Inspired by the culture and history within the East Austin community in a celebratory manner, the mesh of styles seamlessly complement each other, radiating strong female energy with Latin and Afro Latino style. The bright colors and vibrant elements create a sense of excitement in hopes to spark curiosity.
Location: 1209 Rosewood Ave.
Artist: Ernesto Hernández Ramirez
Partners: Rosewood Partners, owners of the eastside restaurant Rosewood and the historical Haynes-DeLashwah House
The Hands that Nurture Us 4-D Augmented Reality mural pays tribute to Drs. Thomas L. Delashwah and Ulysses Young, two African American pioneers in their respective medical fields who lived and worked on these grounds and nurtured their East Austin communities in the early 1900’s.
Location: Attayac St. and E. 5th St.
Artist: Ryan Runcie
Partners: Six Square, Saltillo and Endeavor Real Estate
“Masontown Texas” was a Black community located in what is now East Austin in Travis County. It was bounded to the south by what is now Third Street, to the north by Sixth Street, to the west by Waller Street and to the east by Chicon Street. Sam and Raiford Mason, the two brothers for whom the community was named, bought the first property in this area in 1867. Former slaves from Tennessee, Mississippi and Georgia settled in Masontown. At one time, the community had two Baptist churches and as many as 200 residents. By the 1980s, however, Masonville was no longer identifiable as a distinct neighborhood.
Location: 2416 E. 6th St.
Artist: Ernesto Hernández Ramirez
Partners: HEB Digital and Favor Eastside Tech Hub
With the intense gentrification that the East Austin community/barrio continues to face, this interactive mural installation created by Ernesto Hernández Ramirez, or “Cheché,” in collaboration with Raasin in the Sun, highlights just a handful of leaders, key landmarks and historical events that have weaved the fabric of this vibrant community. May this mural honor the essence of that sacrifice and make certain their contributions will be celebrated and seen as inspiration to all who continue to fight for homes, businesses and cultural identity. Located at the corner of Pedernales and Hidalgo Street in the back of the HEB and Favor Tech Hub.
Location: 5123 E. 7th St.
Artists: Britt, Rey Mar, Gabriel Portillo “Paste,” Niz, Laced and Found, Phoebe Joynt, The Angry Cloud, Elizabeth Hudson, Candy Kuo, Kimie Flores, Mando Martinez, Hope Hummingbird, Giovanni Duenna, Xavier Alvarado and J Proud
Partners: Texas Commission on the Arts and Black Feather Vintage
Walls Unite is an outdoor art gallery and temporary lot restoration, with the theme of “Social Cohesion: Unity in the Community.” In a time of much division within our world, we need more initiatives to bring us together. Walls Unite at the East 7th warehouses brings community and creatives from all backgrounds together for one cause.
Location: Pleasant Valley Bridge Underpass at Rosewood Ave.
Artists: Reji Glass Thomas, Carmen Rangel, Mando Martinez, J Muzacz, Kendrick Rudolph, and Will Hatch Crosby
Partners: Public City, City of Austin, Austin Parks Foundation and Mueller Foundation
The Pleasant Valley Bridge underpass at Rosewood Avenue in East Austin is the place where communities along the trail reflect on collected histories and create community-focused mural art that aims to express how the history of communities along the Trail can be the foundation for its future.
Location: 12th and Chicon Streets (Recovery ATX)
Artist: Jewel Salazar
Partners: Mission Possible, Can’d Aid Foundation
We put out a citywide call for high school artists in the RITS High School Mural Contest back in 2016. One talented student by the name of Jewel Salazar won the opportunity to paint a wall on the iconic Eastside corner of 12th and Chicon after a competitive selection process. This mural spells out “Unity” in sign language and promotes strength within the community by highlighting historical landmarks that helped to build the Eastside community and make it what it is today.
Location: 1106 E. 11th St.
Artist: Samara Barks aka Mixedhues
Partners: Six Square and Kenny Dorham’s Backyard — Diverse Arts
This mural honors the lives and legacies of Margaret Wright and Ernie Mae Miller, two historical and highly influential African American female Eastside musicians.
To learn more about Raasin in the Sun and the work they do in the Austin community, visit their website.