Art is everywhere in San Angelo. In the streets, in public parks, on the downtown building walls and even, inside a museum. And it’s the kind of art that has wide appeal, that makes you want to take pictures and interact with it. So many art experiences in San Angelo is just one of many surprises I experienced when I visited this West Texas town last month as part of a Texas Travel Talk weekend.
Sheep as Art
First, there are sheep……everywhere. More than 100 of the three foot high statues animals can be found in front of shops, offices, churches and are uniquely painted to reflect the business they “guard” with their sheepy selves. You can take a self-guided tour of the “Sheep Spectacular” in downtown. It’s a fun acknowledgement of the importance of the sheep industry to the area.
There are so many different varieties, you can turn sheep-spotting into a scavenger hunt when you visit San Angelo and see who can log the most number of sheep selfies! More about the sheep statues here.
Wall Art in San Angelo
While you’re running around town, check out the WALL murals that honor so much of what has been identified with San Angelo. There’s a mural for Fort Concho, Goodfellow Air Force Base, the Texas Rangers, local industry and some that are just beautiful to see.
Art in Every Park
Then there are the art pieces you can see in the parks around town. They can be quirky like these mosaic vehicles—an entire fire engine made of tiny little squares of glass, painstakingly becoming a fantasy fire engine.
Or they can be beautiful and historical like the “Lady in Blue” statues. These three statues celebrate the earliest days of the area and feature a Jumano brave and The Lady in Blue with a Jumano little girl. The lady in blue is believed to be a Catholic nun, Sister Maria de Jesus de Agreda. They are haunting and beautiful.
And, there’s art all along the beautiful river walk along the banks of the San Angelo River.
Visiting the San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts
The San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts is probably the only San Angelo destination where you’d expect to see art and of course you will. The building is nestled along the river and was sculpted into the space, with a curving roofline.
They’re currently hosting a visiting exhibition of the state’s most interesting quilts. Called “Made In Texas! 25 Contemporary Quilts,” It’s presented by the Texas Quilt Museum in La Grange. The juried exhibition has a wide range of quilt styles, types and themes. This exhibit can’t wait and is only in San Angelo until September 9.
This museum is known for its collection of American ceramics, which are on the second floor when you visit. It’s the most humorous and enjoyable collection. From sea anemones to a fish shop to a green dog, it’s a feast of colors, styles and themes.
We ran out of time during our visit long before we ran out of things to see. When you visit San Angelo, you will see art is everywhere and it’s everywhere because this town wants you to ENJOY it. It’s only $2 for adults to enter the Museum.
If you’re debating about a weekend trip to San Angelo, don’t debate. Just get in the car and go. It’s easy to get there. San Angelo is only about 4 hours from San Antonio, Dallas or Austin. Once there, it’s a breeze to get around. All the parks, shops and attractions are 10-15 min. from the major hotels. Start planning your trip on the Discover San Angelo website or stop by the Visitors Center right downtown.
Three Things I didn’t get to see in San Angelo, but art lovers will enjoy:
The Chicken Farm Art Center is a chicken farm turned artists studios and events center. They have a regular program of events and happenings.
Fort Concho is national landmark and has a monthly program of events. Every other year, they host the American Plains Artists Juried Show from June through August which is not to be missed. They have plenty of other exhibits and displays throughout the year too.
The San Angelo Performing Arts Center has a full calendar of music, dance, variety and other performing arts. Check out the schedule in advance of your visit.