Month: July 2017

WPC: The Unusual Orange Show, Houston, TX

I mused for awhile over whether the Weekly Photo Challenge should be unusual photographs or photographs of something unusual? So I checked out some of the submissions to get some inspiration. I found several different interpretations: some focused on unusual photographs (the way the photo was taken), some were of unusual things, and others about unusual situations.

I then came across some photos of an unusual place we visited in Houston, Texas in 2013. First we went to the Beer Can House (unusual but not as unusual as…), then to The Orange Show. This was truly one of the strangest folk art installations I have ever seen.

The Orange Show was created by the late Jefferson Davis McKissack between 1956 and 1979, a Houston postal worker, who collected common building materials and found objects (hmm, reminds me of Dr. Evermor – see my post for last week’s WPC: Collage). He did not consider himself an artist; The Orange Show was, to him, a monument to the fruit.

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Dale at the entrance to The Orange Show

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After you enter, you walk through a series of exhibits, a collection of seemingly random objects the artist collected. Some had to do with oranges, the monument’s theme, because oranges are healthy and taste good.

The Orange Show

 

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A "history of the world" display
Plastic dinosaurs??!

A sign on display explains how the Orange Show came about. You can also find out more about it here.

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McKissack's representation of "purity."
McKissack’s representation of “purity.”

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Instead of rosy cheeks, this Santa has rosy red lips!
Instead of rosy cheeks, this Santa has rosy red lips!

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Outside there is a small open-air theatre where actual events are held.

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Outside, the main stage area. Shows are still held here, although I don’t know what kind…most likely for children.

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The main stage - there are bleachers and above, individual seats.
The main stage – there are bleachers and above, individual seats.

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Entrance to another, smaller stage
Entrance to another, smaller stage

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Foyer of hearts
Foyer of hearts

The Orange Show has since become more than just this installation; it is the name of an organization promoting local arts and artists. Besides The Orange Show, the organization supports and promotes The Beer Can House, Smithers Park and the Houston Art Car Parade. Information about these art events and installations can be found on the web site whose link I have posted above and below.

From the web site:

Visit The Orange Show
The Orange Show is currently open for the Summer Wednesday through Sunday, from 12-5pm, weather permitting.
Fall and Spring schedules for The Orange Show is Saturdays and Sundays, 12-5pm, weather permitting.  The Orange Show is closed January and February for restorations.
 Admission to the monument is $5.00.  Children under 12 are FREE.  Group tours, field trips, concerts and some workshops have other fees
NOTE: The Orange Show is a No Open Carry site. Pursuant to Section 30.07 we reserve the right to ask you to leave should you openly carry a firearm onto the premises.

And while you are in the neighborhood, just a short walk down the street will take you to Smithers Park, where you can see beautiful mosaics fashioned by local artists out of everyday objects.