Downtown’s urban walls have always provided a wonderful canvas for large, vibrant, brilliantly colored murals. Over the past decade or so, though, a mural explosion has occurred.
All totaled, downtown is home to 125 murals. On this page, we celebrate some of the 40-plus murals commissioned by San Jose Downtown Association and fully supported by businesses and property owners.
This mural started the modern era of the mural movement in downtown San Jose. Located next to the Fourth and Santa Clara streets Chevron Station artists Chris Duncan and Paul Urich pay “homage” to Mexico City Olympic sprinters and activists John Carlos and Tommy Evans. (2003)
Jeffrey Hemming’s large mural on the side of the Lido Nightclub building put “eyes” on Fountain Alley — which at the time had some crime issues — also gaining funding from the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s office. (2015 – set for removal when Lido Building is razed)
“Nuestra Ofrenda” by Roberto Romo (@huesomacizo) with help from Francisco Rameriz (@fco1980)
This mural is dedicated to all the generous donor families of San José, inspired by two young local donors, Nancy Yahayra Gutierrez and Brandon Castellanos, who gave the gift of life through organ and tissue donation. May they both rest in peace.
Nancy and Brandon are two of the hundreds of Latinx donors who have saved and enhanced thousands of lives through the years. Their portraits rest on either side of the ceramic milagro heart, created by various clay artists from Higher Fire (@higherfire_sj), which encompasses the young donor’s personalities through visual images and symbols.
Come downtown to see the new Market Square Mural, “Lilies at Market Square” by Jet Martinez.
Rubicon Point Partners collaborated with Jet to make this mural possible. The wall was a blank slate and they saw the opportunity to create something beautiful for both the tenants at Market Square off Market Street at St. John Street and the community at large. Their hope is that both tenants and pedestrians can stop and admire the calming nature of this new mural.