The Beer Can House, 2011. Photo: Pete Gershon

The Beer Can House, 2011. Photo: Pete Gershon

Painting the Town Orange: the Stories Behind Houston's Visionary Art Environments

2014, History Press / Arcadia

Why would someone cover a house with flattened beer cans?  Who would spend twenty years building a shrine to the health benefits of the orange? Can a man find redemption by turning discarded objects into livable art?

Painting the Town Orange is the first book-length project to tell the stories behind the Orange Show, the Beer Can House, and a number of other visionary art environments that have flourished in a city free of zoning restrictions that celebrates property rights and wildcatter individualism.  Each case study explores the biographies, techniques and motivations of their creators as well as the efforts of the arts patrons, administrators, and conservators who have promoted and preserved their work.

Order from Arcadia Publishing / History Press

Also available at

A chapter edited for length was serialized at The Great God Pan is Dead:

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