There are many ways to support the booming North Texas art scene, and thankfully our city offers loads of places where you can nurture your family’s love of art. Explore the neighborhood’s creative side with this guide to Allen’s outstanding public art installations, from community park murals to stunning metal sculptures.
Allen’s Dedication to Public Art
Allen’s voters are serious about the arts. They approved nearly $3 million in 2005 to fund various commissioned public art projects designed to enhance our charming community. These one-of-a-kind, site-specific creations are a unique part of the city’s culture. They provide residents with many opportunities to discover inspirational examples of creative self-expression.
Cottonwood Creek Trail
“Bridge, Cottonwood Creek Trail, Allen Station Park, Allen, Texas” licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Flickr by gurdonark
Cottonwood Creek proudly hosts two of our favorite public art pieces. “Current Drift” is a magnificent collaboration between Bill FitzGibbons and George Schroeder. Their purpose is to provide active residents with an unexpectedly delightful piece, also known as the Cottonwood Creek Trail Bridge.
The work of these talented fabricators serves as a bicyclist and pedestrian thoroughfare. So load up your baby in the stroller and discover this aluminum-crafted representation of the flowing creek it crosses. The City of Allen organized this installation in 2015.
A walk down the Cottonwood Trail will lead you to another unexpected art installation entitled “Wave Machine, number 2, in pastels.” Commissioned by Wynne/Jackson, Inc., it proudly stands at the trailhead. Artist Todd Griggs used metal and paint to make this undulating art installation stand out from its scenic backdrop.
The next stop on this city-wide tour is Windridge Park. Located at Cambridge Drive, this small pocket park proudly displays “75 Feet of Friendship.” This mural by self-taught local graffiti artist Jondavid De Leon transformed this modest neighborhood playground into one of the city’s best art installations.
The acrylic-painted mural graces the seating wall that borders the recently renovated jungle gym. The piece is 75 feet long and is part of an outreach program with Allen’s youth. De Leon collaborated with Allen High and Boyd Elementary School art students to play a role in its creation and help develop the mural’s concept. The team spent several days in 2018 bringing their ideas to life.
Central Fire Station
Allen is proud to be home to an Amanda Dunbar original. This famous child prodigy artist, world traveler, and former Allen resident created the oil-on-canvas composition entitled “911 MIA.” True to Dunbar’s classic style, this colorful and vibrant painting tells a deeper story the longer you gaze at it. Look closely at the image and you’ll notice that although one coat is missing, it can be seen as an apparition, reminding us to never forget.
You’ll find this art installation at Central Fire Station on Century Parkway. Stop by on October 14. The Mayor of Allen declared that date “Amanda Dunbar Day” in 2000. Schedule a tour of the firehouse with two weeks’ notice. Toddlers and up will get an up-close look at a fire truck and learn about fire safety.
Allen Station Park
Various galleries across the country have featured bronzesmith Walt Horton’s spectacular work. His passion for three-dimensional sculptures led him to create two pieces for Allen families to enjoy.
“Out of the Park (Girl)” and “Out of the Park (Boy)” both stand proudly in Allen Station Park’s softball complex. This pair of statues captures a young boy and girl enjoying the game of baseball. The city commissioned the piece in 1999 with funds from the Allen Community Development Corporation.
Allen Station Park is a popular place for families to gather. This sizable regional green space offers loads of outdoor recreational amenities, including:
- Baseball and softball fields.
- Walking and biking trails.
- Washer courts.
- Skate park.
- BMX track.
- Roller hockey rinks.
Show your family’s community support and discover our town’s iconic art installation near US Highway 75 and North Allen Heights Drive. “A is For Allen” by Gordon Huether is a 12-foot-wide by 16-foot-tall letter A. This abstract sculpture greets drivers as they zoom down the highway.
Officials commissioned the installation in 2012, and it honors local history with native stone as its primary medium. This striking example of contemporary artwork captures the essence of the city by incorporating elements that represent the artist’s interpretation of Allen’s dynamic community with stacked glass, powder-coated metal, and stainless steel.
Montgomery Farm Estates
Brad Goldberg’s piece “Cisterna” at Montgomery Farm Estates is another part of Allen’s growing public art collection. Located on Old Bethany Road, this sustainable art piece forms both a striking landmark and an operating windmill.
Goldberg designed it to collect and clean runoff water while aerating a string of ponds that provide irrigation for the neighborhood garden and nearby tree farm. The artist constructed the 130-foot structure from native Texas Lueders limestone and steel. It operates thanks to a 15-kilowatt wind turbine.
The community of Montgomery Farm features trails, ponds, and over 200 acres of green space. Its developers focused on maintaining plenty of spots where your family can connect with nature right outside your door. Organizers commissioned “Cisterna” in 2006.
Sculpturist Kathie Cox’s public art installation at Allen’s Watters Creek is another charming example of her love of the natural world. Her style fits in well with Allen’s commitment to Texas’ flora and fauna. “Colts at Upper Pond” are life-size depictions of this New York-trained creative’s whimsy and grace. These young horses stand under the pecan tree behind Mi Cocina on Garden Park Drive.
Also in Watters Creek, “Chauncy Too, Abby & Carrot,” welcome your kiddos to the park. Jim Budish created this adorable bronze installation on Market Street by the playground entrance to remind even the youngest Texan to celebrate the simple things in life.
At Crème de la Crème of Allen, Texas, we know art plays an important role in your child’s education. That’s why our approach includes loads of creative endeavors. Contact us to learn more about how our unique classroom rotations provide a way for your child to create, wonder, and explore.