Before even stepping un dedo del pie into Artelexia's new North Park location, you can feel the contagious energy and vibrancy of the space. With a brilliantly colored and uplifting mural outside proclaiming "¡You are radiant!," onlookers instantly become aware of their own self-image and can't help but smile.
The mural, designed by artist Channin Fulton, is a tribute to confidence declaring in capital letters, "YES YOU." The work stands as a labor of love as volunteers and North Park locals pitched in to paint its many shapes and rainbow of colors. The progression from outline to completion can be seen on Artelexia's blog. The mural also was featured recently as a "Where are we Wednesday" photo on PACIFIC's Instagram feed.
Waiting inside is another vivacious mural, this one of beloved Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo. In vivid hues of red, pink and yellow, the piece simply states, "Love Yourself." Frida, surrounded by flowers and doves, gazes directly at you, engaging your attention and inner reflection, as she did in her famous self-portraits.
A cornucopia of colorful goods entices the visitor perusing the shop, including Mexican-themed books, matchboxes, pencils, buttons, pinatas, coloring books, and pretty much anything you could ever think of to decorate your home or give as a thoughtful gift.
Fans of Mexican-inspired artwork will love the book Day of the Dead Folk Art and a variety of tomes on artist Frida Kahlo and her husband, Diego Rivera. Customers can inspire their kids to be art lovers with a selection of illustrated children's books, including Green is a Chile Pepper teaching colors, and Round is a Tortilla on shapes. Overwhelmed and indecisive buyers can rest their brain with the Artelexia Grab Bag, an assortment of goodies priced at $25.
For Cinco de Mayo, Artelexia is teaming up with Firehouse Eatery & Lounge in Pacific Beach for a fundraiser benefiting MANA San Diego. For a small $10 donation, guests can celebrate in style with 100% of proceeds going to MANA de San Diego's mission of "Empowering Latinas through Education, Leadership Development, Community Service and Advocacy." (Think mentorships, scholarships, and networking programs.) Partygoers can enjoy a complimentary welcome cocktail, access to the Hola Bitches X Artelexia VIP lounge, live mariachi music, tequila tasting, games, and prizes. Tickets are available here. The event takes place at Firehouse, located at 722 Grand Ave. in Pacific Beach.
Other artsy events coming up at Artelexia include a May 13 Pop-Up Shop with Crafty Chica and AliciasDelicias, which is complete with crafts and book-signing. Additionally, Workshop and Wine Wednesday, is where from 6-8 p.m. on May 17, guests can learn to make their own Mexican matchboxes (all materials provided), while sipping on vino.
3803 Ray St., North Park, 619.501.6381, artelexia.com