100 Block Mural Project

100 block mural on side of building

Photographer: Hunter Ridenour (2022)

Artist: 100 Individual Artists (see LocalColorSJ)
Year: 2019
Commissioned by: Local Color SJ


On the side of a building, this mural, sponsored by LocalColor SJ, consists of 100 individual 3’x3’ mural tiles designed and painted by local artists. The resulting 65 ft long wall comes together as a visual tapestry of images, symbols and meanings that showcases San Jose’s artistic diversity and stands as an example of the non-profit’s goals of creating collaborative opportunities for local makers. 

Public Art as Resistance

In “The 100 Block Mural” the representation of the individual and collective come together in an interdependent representation of society. Though each tile represents an individual identity, aspiration, or life, they do not exist as wholly separate works, but rather a holistic representation of the city. Metropolitan centers are portrayed as homogenous, fast paced, loud and unfamiliar spaces. “The 100 Block Mural” pushes back on the perspective to show the breadth of life, worldviews, and experiences of individuals who live, work, and recreate throughout the city. The viewer is presented with 100 stories that contribute to the epic that is San Jose. 

Which one represents your story?

Continue Your Walk

The construction going on next to this mural was originally designed by Bjarke Ingels for the annual Serpentine Galleries architecture competition in London. Developer Westbank purchased the pavilion and brought it to Toronto and then to San José. The goal was to uplift San José's cultural economy and exemplify the repurposing of parking lots/vacant parcels. It is supposed to stay for eight months but the construction around it has not been completed. It has stayed closed for a little over seven months. They say it should be completed by June. Hopefully, the piece will grace us for a bit longer. 

The next public art tells the complex story of the Japanese-American internment in California and is a bronze sculpture tucked into a federal building plaza, behind the VTA Light Rail guard, and across from a parking structure. Plan to spend some time here taking in the representative stories on this work.

Additional Resources

100 Blocks LogoList of Names 1
List of Names 2List of Names 3