Meet Chris Vance, Bayou City Art Festival Downtown 2018 Featured Artist

Featured Artist, Chris Vance, Joins 47 Year Celebration in Downtown Houston on October 13-14, 2018 with His Mixed Media 2D Pieces


Please share a little about yourself & how you knew art would be your passion:   I’m a city kid from Des Moines, Iowa most people think when I say I’m from Iowa that I was a farmer.  I went to North High School in Des Moines and then continued my education at Iowa State University.

I loved to skateboard growing up and my dad wanted me to be the next great baseball player.  My elementary teacher noticed my skills at a young age and sent me to the Des Moines art center for art classes.

Growing up, I was really into skating and thrasher magazine, so the skateboard graphics in the eighties really spoke to me.  Skating gave me a sense of freedom while doing tricks and being creative. I think those experiences mixed with music made me notice and became aware of street art, album covers. All which lead me to my passion for art.  At a young age, I never really thought about art as a career path, and it wasn’t until college when I realized that I could possibly peruse art as a career.

Little about your art skills and how you developed them: My art skills have come from many different avenues starting with just drawing as a kid and did not really start painting until college.

The art I am making today is combined of many different mediums and includes spray paint, charcoal, colored pencils, graffiti markers, and acrylic paint.  I choose to work on wood primarily, but I love paper and canvas as well.  The skills have developed by lots of extermination, I recently had a long conversation with a young artist I don’t consider myself a masterful craftsman, but over the years found tools to help my visual language.  

Take about your concepts and what you’re communicating in your art: A lot of the concepts are derived from my passion for ‘Beavis and Butthead’ and really just trying to stay in the childlike instinct of making art and making people laugh.  I have a more serious body of work with my purely abstracts, but the figurative work is solely based on humor and trying to show people another place they could travel like cartoons achieve.

Thoughts on being the featured artist for Bayou City Art Fest:  When asked about being the featured artist at the 2018 Bayou City Art Festival Downtown, I was super honored.  I participated in many of the shows over the years and think the community of Houston is a diverse fun culture that appreciates graffiti.  I really hope that this opportunity will help me reach a new audience and gets people pumped about the festival.

Words for upcoming artists:  For young artist, the best advice I have is expose yourself to art. Attend the festival meet the artist and ask questions.

All participating artists in the show have a different story and a different reason they chose art as a career.  So find someone and pick their brain.  All in all just create work, draw, sculpt, or whatever you do every day.  This will be the thing that sets you apart, your work ethic and belief in your work.  There are always downfalls just keep battling yourself to be the best you can be.

ABOUT CHRIS VANCE:  Fueled by daily experiences, emotions and ideas, Vance is able to transform a blank canvas into an interpretation of himself. Art is his medium of expression and Vance refers to art as his personal diary. Using acrylic charcoal, spray paint or graffiti markers, he allows his feelings to drive the piece on a subconscious level. Vance works on wood, paper and finishes each piece with a coat of lacquer.

The featured artwork is inspired by Houston and showcases the city’s vibrant atmosphere and diverse communities. Vance was influenced by the exciting and inclusive city that is Houston. The featured artwork is inspired by graffiti, cartoons, the skateboarding culture, and trains. Vance combined his signature style, and Downtown Houston’s ambience to create a meaningful and fun piece.


The outdoor festival will provide guests with the opportunity to see and purchase unique, custom art under the iconic Houston skyline.

Bayou City Art Festival Downtown will feature live music in front of City Hall and throughout the festival along with entertainment, beverage stations, food trucks and much more for patrons to enjoy. In the Children’s Creative Zone, the festival’s nonprofit partners will host art activities for all ages.

The sophisticated gallery will showcase 300 artist and will transform the streets of Downtown into artistic avenues bursting with colors and culture on Saturday and Sunday, October 13-14, 2018.

For tickets and more information, go to