This mural attempts to represent both the shifting, buzzing, edgy, transient energy of the neighborhood alongside the affection and appreciation for it all on the part of so many of its residents. Most of the images Horst used were taken from the time he spent in the neighborhood photographing pedestrians. He chose images of people moving by foot, bicycle and skateboard, typifying the diversity of the neighborhood in a number of ways: diversity of age, ethnicity, sex, mode of transportation. He also chose images from meetings with residents in their homes. He then used these images from the neighborhood and wove them together with a honeycomb pattern and bee silhouettes that represent the connections (cross pollination) within the neighborhood and the sweetness that results from them. The pattern of bees and the allusion to a honeycomb structure might also suggest both the active energy of the student residents and the sweetness of the neighborhood’s hospitality.
Mark Horst lives and works in Albuquerque, New Mexico, working in portraiture, murals and sculpture. His public art projects often include a significant level of community engagement. Horst carries a quiver full of painterly gifts. His startling work reveals wild pinpricks of the eternal, often in the subtlest of images. Make no mistake, the paintings sometimes hold our feet to the flame - a door between a collectively understood image and some new paint-spirit that comes hurtling through. It is not always a comfortable experience. That door is also a gateway between the tacit and the explicit - his sheer feel and technique is obvious, but there are other energies at work here too, some ancient condition of the soul. Horst is one of the few new painters to hold the paradox of tradition and innovation within him. There is brilliance here.
Supported By City of Albuquerque 1% for Art, University Heights Neighborhood Association, & PNM