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Geocoding Murals of El Paso

Geocoding Murals of El Paso

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Published by Miguel Juarez

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Categories:Types, Maps
Published by: Miguel Juarez on May 24, 2011
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11/07/2012

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1
GeocodingtheMuralsofElPaso,Texas:AnAnalysisbyAddressesandZipCodes
Sociology3332/Anthropology3332IntrotoGISProject(Graduatestudent)FinalReportMiguelJuárezMay4,2011
 
2
Introduction
Thebook
ColorsonDesertWalls:theMuralsofElPaso
1
(1997,TexasWesternPress)featuresover200muralsthatrangefromworkspaintedundertheWorks-ProgressAdministration(MPA)in1938toChicanomuralspaintedundertheSpaghettiBowlin2010.EventodaymuralsarebeingpaintedonwallsinElPaso.Inretrospect,when
Colors
waspublishedin1997,TexasWesternPressdidnotseeaneedtoincludemapsinthebook.This,Ibelieveisoneofthebook’sdeficiencies.AtthetimeIdidnotknowwhethertheTWPhadthecapacitytocreatemapsorifIastheauthor,wassupposedtoprovidethem—regardless,thetopicwasnotdiscussed.AnotherdeficiencyofthebookwasthattheTWPwantedtoproduceacoffeetable-likebookofimagesofthemurals,whereasIwantedtowriteasocialhistoryofmuralsandmural-makinginElPaso.IcreatedseveraldraftsandallmetwithdislikefromtheMarciaDaudistel,theacquiringeditoratthetimewhoaskedmetotrimitdownandreviseitseveraltimes.Intheend,asacompromise,IdecidedtointerviewtheartistswhohadpaintedthemuralsandtopublishtheiroralhistoriesandthatwouldcomprisethetextaccompaniedbyimagesofthemuralscreatedbyCynthiaFarah,whowasmyco-researcherinthecreationofthiswork.IinterviewedandtranscribedtheartistsfeaturedinthebookandCindyprovidedtheimages.
Geo-codingMurals
BeforebeginningtheprojectIsearchedforotherprojectsthatmayhaddonesomethingsimilarbutIdidnotfindanythingrelatedtowhatIsoughttodoforthisproject.IdidlocateanarticleontheInternettitled:
“Philly Chooses GIS to Showcase and Manage its

1
Miguel Juárez,
Colors on Desert Walls, the Murals of El Paso
(Texas Western Press, 1997).
2
City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, Muralfarm.org,http://muralarts.org/muralfarm. Accessed May 4, 2011.
 
3
Thousands of Murals,” published on 1/7/2009 that documented the City of Philadelphia’s effortsto geocode its murals. The article described a site titled:
Muralfarm.org, an interactive geographic online web application, pictures anddetailed information about murals [that] can be searched by artist, theme, date,location, neighborhood, and other key terms. Visitors to Muralfarm.org can tagfavorite photographs, save searches, be notified when new murals are addedthanks to GeoRSS feeds, and enjoy special features such as viewing the murals inGoogle Earth and Google Maps. Mural Arts Program staff can easily andefficiently manage information pertaining to each mural through a sophisticatedasset management back-end interface. The new site, www.muralfarm.org, willofficially launch on January 29, 2009.
2
 
ForthegraduateprojectintheSociology3332/Anthropology3332classIntroductiontoGISclassIchosetogeo-codemuralsinElPasofeaturedinthe
ColorsonDesertWalls
bookthathadaddresseswheremuralshadbeenpainted.FormuralsthathadaddressesIaddedtheirzipcodesbylookinguptheaddressesinvariousZipCodesearchenginesliketheUPSZipCodefinder.
3
IaddedtheseZipCodestotheExcelfilethatcoupledwiththeaddressesproducedthedatatoproducethisproject.Itisimportanttonotethatnotalllocationswheremuralshadbeenpaintedhadaddresses.IdidembarkonlocatingaddressesforvariousmuralsusingGoogleEarth,aswellastheInternet,butatacertainpointthisprovedtobetoolaborious,soIlimitedthenumberofmuralsto200andincludedthemuralsthatIfeltwereimportanttoinclude.Initially,Icreatedaspreadsheetwithvariousattributesbutagainafterenteringdataforseveraldays,IchosetocapturethedataIfeltmostimportantlikeTitle,Address,YearPainted,andCreatoralongwithpertinentattributeswhenpossible.Amongthedifferenttechniqueslikeusingx-ycoordinates,latitudeandlongitude,addresseswithzipcodesprovideameanstogeo-code,sothisiswhatIutilizedforthisproject.

2
City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, Muralfarm.org,http://muralarts.org/muralfarm. Accessed May 4, 2011.
3
UPS Zip Code Lookup,http://zip4.usps.com/zip4/welcome.jsp, Accessed April 1, 2011.

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