I have wanted to write about this particular mural for some time. It’s prominently visible if you are driving north on upper Nolensville Pike, it’s a weird mix of cheesy and minimalist, and it seemed to have been around a long while. What’s not to love? Sadly, there always seemed to be at least one car parked in front of it. So when I saw it car-free, I knew I had to get my shot quick. Sadly for this mural, the reason I found it car-free may also spell its doom. The furniture and appliance store whose goods it advertises has moved. Sam’s Mattress Furniture Warehouse doesn’t have much of an internet presence (other than a couple of bad Yelp reviews), but a sign on the door lists three new addresses, two for furniture and mattresses, one for appliances, all closer to downtown on Nolensville. The murals are as I guessed, survivors. All are signed by Mark E. Witte, a name I have not been able to track down. Witte seems to have worked fast giving each of them a separate specific date in April 2009. But they are out of order. Going left to right, they are dated April 26, 27, 28, 25 and 30. So he did the sofas first, then went back to the washing machine and worked his way back down the wall. Started on a Saturday, finished on a Thursday for a productive week. But with Sam’s closed, the fate of this mural seems uncertain.
Located at 3312 Nolensville Pike. It faces south, towards Chilton Street. It is possible to park across the street on Chilton, and there is of course parking at Sam’s until developers get a hold of it.
October 20, 2018 at 8:41 am
I have a drawing by Mark E Witte that I bought almost 2 years ago. It was sitting in the window of a framing store for $5. Spent $75 on a frame once I bought it. I was told he was a homeless man that sold the pictures to make money. It’s been one of my favorite pieces but I am now looking to try and sell it, but this is the only mention I have found of his name. Very talented man.
April 10, 2022 at 5:41 pm
I was wondering about Mark Witte the other day and came across a work of his. So looked him up on the internet.
May 10, 2020 at 12:02 pm
My family has lived in Nashville for at least three generations. My aunt was a great local artist and I recently found a box of her things. Inside the box was a large lithograph print of the Nashville skyline, signed and dated, Mark E Witte 1986 – 574/1,000. I am so happy to have found this piece in such good condition and look forward to having it framed. The quality of the work is amazing and it is a great piece to look at, considering how much has changed!
January 27, 2021 at 10:27 pm
I knew Mark from back in the 80’s. He did Nashville skyline art in the tiny dot style … can’t recall the actual name for the style. He was either autistic or had mental health issues even back then and he was already homeless most of the time. He was often around the Billiards on OHB and behind Nolensville Rd Kroger there on the corner. Saw him later on in the 90’s on Elliston, he was definitely not doing very well. I tried to get his contact info, but he had none. I looked for his artwork when I was going through old stuff recently, but it never turned up, sadly. I actually think of him often. Wonder if he was ever able to get help…or at least off the streets. We, here in the U.S., are not good about taking care of our own. He was incapable of caring for himself, it’s shameful to think no one ever did anything to help him. I’ve been away for many years now, but I welcome any additional info regarding Mark. firstname.lastname@example.org
January 28, 2021 at 1:51 am
Thank you for sharing this. I don’t know anything about him, Like you, I think its shameful how people don’t get the help they need. Like you, I hope he got help.
November 18, 2021 at 11:28 pm
I was in a group home with Mark when I was 17 years old. We were best friends in the home as we were both into artwork. I still have a pastel painting he did of my bedroom in the group home. He liked my bedroom because I had done it up in rock and roll with posters and stuff. We would sit back in my bedroom and smoke our weed, compare drawings and listen to album rock on my stereo. I have thought about him many times through the years and it saddens me to think he became homeless. He was a good guy and I really loved him as a friend back then. I would love to see him again, if you have found out anything please message me at Jerry881@ymail.com.
April 10, 2022 at 5:43 pm
I lived at 200 or 400? Rad or Street in Nashville 1998-2000 and Mark Witte lived directly behind my house at that time.
April 1, 2021 at 8:10 pm
I was a friend to mark witty’s in the 80s he live with me for about 3 months I got him a job at Tennessee Excavating he worked about 2 months and quit he would stay up all night doing his artwork and selling it on the street he was a good guy he graduated from Overton High School I lost contact from him years and years ago I’ve often wondered what happened to him