Sometimes the stars align, and a young artist takes up residence at a shambolic historic property, becoming its unofficial tour guide. In the serendipitous case of Justin Parr and the Hot Wells Ruins, located on San Antonio’s Southside, the property in question reveals itself to be riddled with friendly (if creepy) paranormal activity. I spoke with the glass blower and owner of Blue Star’s Fl!ght Gallery, about his wild experience living in a converted shipping container at the foot of the haunted ruins.
It was 2012, Obama was president, and Parr was running in circles with local real estate investor James Lifshutz. Lifshutz, the previous owner of Hot Wells before it was converted into an official park, also owns the Blue Star Arts Complex, where Parr houses his gallery. The two got to talking, and it was decided that Parr would leave his perfect King William apartment to live at the ruins while helping Lifshutz maintain the property, which at the time was in complete disrepair.