Alpine Murals Highlight
Local History, Art
Stylle Read’s largest mural in Alpine is located on the east facing wall of the Prescription Shop. It’s a storyboard
of Texas Ranger history in the Big Bend.
by Shawna Graves
From hand painted business signs to wild
desert scenes, Alpine surfaces are covered
with beautiful art telling the stories of its
residents, past and present.
Murals have a long history here and local
artists are making sure the tradition
continues, with several new installations up in
the past year and more planned.
Folk art adorns homes and businesses
dating to the 1950s, and there is a growing
gallery of work by Fort Worth-based Western
artist Stylle Read, plus locally derived visions
of the Big Bend on exteriors ranging from the
south side of town to beautiful Kokernot
Most are concentrated in the downtown
district roughly bounded by Sul Ross and
Murphy Avenues to the north and south, and
Garnet and 7th Streets to the east and west,
but there are notable works all over, and one
local artist is compiling all 40 + in a self-
Downtown artist Nancy Whitlock, of
Whitlock Studio of Fine Art located on 6th
Street, is cataloging all pops of wall art she
and other members of the Alpine Downtown
Association can find. Whitlock celebrates the
nontraditional and organic feel many of the
works exhibit and is proud of the local
connections they represent.
In a quirky twist that is beginning to define
the area, local graffiti is embraced by the
business world, and a graffiti artist who goes
by the name Peanut has been commissioned
by local business owners to create a mural in
his style. The colorful commission will be
completed later this year.
An example of one Alpine’s older murals
that is often overlooked is located at the
corner of F Ave and 10th Street on the old
H&L Store. Done in a traditional Mexican
style, it shows a romantic scene of a man
serenading a woman surrounded by flowers.
The building has long been a residence
instead of a store and represents a time when
numerous corner stores dotted the
Visitors are likely to see one of Stylle Read’s
murals upon first entering town from the
east. Read’s larger than life ode to Texas
Rangers is painted on the wall of the
Prescription Shop at the corner of Holland
Ave and Bird St. and was just completed
August 2019. It tells the story of Texas
Rangers who lived in Big Bend and
surrounding areas and its sepia tones invoke
old western movies.
Three of Read’s earlier works span Holland
Ave. You’ll find the dramatic backdrop of Big
Brewster and Mercado murals at the corner
of 5th Street and Holland, with food trucks in
the open lot between them. Both of these
murals are Alpine icons and have been used
on postcards and other memorabilia.
Walk east a block from there to check out
Read’s Cattle Drive mural on the west facing
wall of Kishmish Plaza, showing off ranch
brands of yesteryear and an iconic scene of
cowboys on the open range.
Read’s traditional western style is a stark
contrast to another recent addition located at
Kokernot Park on Fighting Buck Ave. The park
is worth visiting for its massive shade trees,
abundant picnic tables, newly equipped
children’s playgrounds, walking loop, dog
park, and the beautiful mural emblazoned on
a water tank behind the soccer fields.
Alpine-based artist Amanda Calhoun