AUSTIN, Texas – In an effort to celebrate mental wellness, Austin Mayor Steve Adler has declared Jan. 22 “Hi, How Are You” Day.
The iconic piece of Austin street art serves a purpose beyond a tourist attraction. Located at the corner of Guadalupe and 21st Street, “Hi, How Are You” was painted by singer-songwriter Daniel Johnston, who has dealt with his own mental health issues.
Co-founders Courtney Blanton and Tom Gimbel created the “Hi, How Are You” Foundation based on the art piece to promote mental well-being and educate communities on mental health issues. Their goal is to spark a conversation and help those suffering in silence find someone to talk to.
“However people are, whatever they are dealing with, you could be the turning point in that moment. Sometimes people just need to be heard,” states the foundation’s website.
On Jan. 22, Austinites are encouraged to check on a friend, neighbor, or family member and say “Hi, How Are You?” The day was picked to honor Johnston, whose birthday is Jan. 22.
Then at 8 p.m., a night of music and art will kick off at The Mohawk with performances by Moving Panoramas, Kathy McCarty, Cowboy Diplomacy, Jane Ellen Bryant, Will Courtney, Josh T. Pierson & Jonathan Terrell and a special guest.