The Orange Show
The Orange Show Center for Visionary Art (OSCVA) is a non-profit organization in Houston whose mission is to preserve artistic environments and nourish artistic expressions – no matter how crazy, wacky or out-of-the-box it might be. And it all started with a man, a vision and a passion for nature’s most perfect fruit – the orange.
In 1956, Jefferson Davis McKissack, a Houston postal worker, began transforming an empty lot in the East End of Houston into the world’s first Orange Show. Constructing everything himself, McKissack collected odds and ends like mannequins, wagon wheels, tiles and old tractor seats to create this 3,000 square-foot monument. The end result of all this work is a truly unique maze that is reminiscent of an old-timey carnival, filled with signs and sculptures that McKissack used to share life lessons he whole-heartedly believed in.
We got lost for well over an hour walking around and around, pointing out cool findings to one another and taking tons of pictures (only a fraction of which made it onto this site). We threw a quarter into the wishing well, toured the mini-museum and climbed all over the two-story structures.
Overall, it’s a really cool place to spend an hour or two, and we definitely want to go back, especially when there’s an event or concert going on. Like the venue, the shows are not your run of the mill performances. It’s truly a one-of-a-kind venue that makes for a unique experience for the audience and artists. Plus, locally brewed St. Arnold’s is sold at these select evenings.
We left with an unwavering respect for McKissack, and a strange craving for orange juice. McKissack followed his dream and created something truly unique and zany. His Orange Show embodies a special kind of Houston art that you don’t find in stuffy art galleries. As a city, we believe there is an artist in each and every one of us; and when characters like McKissack put their personal stamp on the city, the result is an eclectic urban sprawl. The passion of unpredictable people is the secret recipe for Houston’s eccentric persona.
• Set aside plenty of time for a visit. This place is massive!
• Don’t forget to bring $1 for admission.
• Check the calendar for upcoming events to partake in, http://orangeshow.org/upcoming-events/.
2402 Munger St. Houston, Tx 77023
Saturday – Sunday, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
(After Memorial Day: Wednesday – Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday – Sunday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.)
Free street parking