Houston’s Art Car Museum Transforms Cars Into Mind-Boggling Art

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Houston and art cars go hand-in-hand. Car culture, in fact, has embedded itself in the city’s psyche, and that’s why the “Garage Mahal” came about. Formally known as the Art Car Museum, this altar to automobiles as an art form is a haven for those who appreciate it. While many of us are taking great care of our own rides, artists have stepped up to work with canvases such as cars, motorcycles, and even roller skates (hey, they have wheels…). They’ve polished them until they shine like the tributes to the modern movement they are.

Using a car itself as the base for their art, veritable masterpieces have come out of the Bayou City and gone on parade for the world to see. The Art Car Museum was established in 1998 by James and Ann Harithas, artists who had a passion for their projects and wanted to share the work of others. Many of the cars are still able to be driven, but they all contain a variety of objects on their exteriors one wouldn’t expect to see, which is the beauty of it. Using paint, glue, and a collection of objects that draw attention, art car creators have gone down in Texas history as forming the basis of a beloved style.

Houston’s Art Car Museum Transforms Cars Into Mind-Boggling Art

Photo: Facebook/Art Car Museum

The Art Car Museum itself (aptly nicknamed the “Garage Mahal”) is located at 140 Heights Blvd. in Houston. It’s closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. Would-be visitors are asked to call in advance to book for large group tours, but admission is free, and the art that you can witness within its walls far surpasses your wildest imagination. Covered in corks, trophies, cameras, and CDs, you’ll see car and non-car-based art, including “many other types of motorized and human-powered vehicles all decorated in various themes.” Among the collection, some of the more notable pieces consist of a giant “Roachster” (a roach-shaped vehicle), Rex Rabbit holding a basket of eggs, and one called “Faith,” which features the head of a water-buffalo as opposed to traditional longhorns one might.