Every now and then people do good stuff that can surprise and delight you. We could all use more of that in our lives.
Lifeguard towers brightened by local artists
By MARINA WISE
Special to the PRESS
The week before Memorial Day Weekend, eight artists were materializing the vision that they had held for quite some time—to leave an artistic stamp on the beaches of South Padre Island. To achieve this goal, they coated various lifeguard towers along the coast with unique paintings.
Jim Pigg, who operates the Beach Rescue program, recruited a core nucleus of talented painters to fulfill the Mob. %each Rescue provided all the paint used.
“Jim Pigg was looking any artists willing to do this project because he believed it would make a difference as we (the painters) all have believed,” said Christina Salazar, one of the artists involved and owner of Indigo Art & Apparel in Port Isabel. “He opened the door for all of the artists from the area and from a far.”
While working on their task, the painters took many of South Padre’s natural elements into account. One beach fundamental, though, held the most importance in the hearts and creativity of the artists.
“Our biggest inspiration was the ocean,” Salazar said. “Though we all knew that what we were doing was bigger than all of us.”
All the while, the artists kept in mind the different kinds of people their work would impact. Using this as their motivation, they created masterpieces they thought would touch the hearts of a diverse array of beachgoers.
“I think they will be excited to see more (paintings) every summer,” Salazar said. “People who don’t know about art will have a different outlook at art at the beach. I hope it inspires children who want to become artists.”
Salazar does not want the Laguna Madre’s artistic influence to be capped with the completion of just the lifeguard towers, though. She is hopeful to see the area one day flooded with art.
“I would love to see murals all over the Laguna Madre and South Padre Island area as well,” Salazar said. “Port Isabel needs more murals and definitely more art. I would love to see a music and art festival.”
And she doesn’t stop there. “I think getting the kids involved would be the icing on the cake,” Salazar continued. “Trash cans with art and possibly sidewalk chalk art around the (Lighthouse) Square. I would love for Port Isabel to be known for its art and history.”
Only time will tell if Salazar’s other artistic dreams become reality, but for now, the public can enjoy these beautiful lifeguard towers. These towers have been transformed from utilitarian items to pieces of art.
“These structures are not just lifeguard towers,” Salazar said. “They are part of each artist that made them. It’s) never been done here and it was time,” she said, referring to the artwork created on the towers.