The population of bees, which has been in decline of late, is maybe coming around. Of course, if they were all as big as this one, that might not be a good thing! The Nashville artist who goes by jamersonsgc produced this bee for Eddie’s Cee Bee Food Store on Lafayette, a natural design as bees are part of Cee Bee’s logos. Jamerson, who uses the tag #LowKeyArt, also apparently designs clothing, among other things. I actually had to step out in the middle of Lafayette Street to get this shot. The things I do for art! It appears to be dated 2018, and I’m pretty sure I was on Lafayette earlier this year and didn’t see it, so it’s probably pretty new. And hey, there’s the Batman Building!
Located at 109 Lafayette Street. The mural faces Lafayette. Cee Bee is a grocery store and has plenty of parking. Load up on sundries and enjoy the art!
I don’t usually take photos from this far away, but I would have a very stretched out photo if I’d gotten closer. This Murals and More work by Michael Cooper is kind of gargantuan. And of course with murals, there’s not a lot you can do to adjust the canvas. The canvas here is the south-facing wall of Camel Express Car Wash. This is, of course, the long tunnel that the cars pass through, and if the client wants the whole wall done, this is the shape of the mural you will get. And it’s no doubt a good investment. Anyone headed north on Dickerson Pike is going to get a clear view from a good ways off, just after they pass under I-65 and Briley Parkway. Cooper deploys his usual trompe l’oeil technique in a particularly colorful way here. I’m not sure I’d want my car to actually go through the process displayed, however! Camel Express features some “making of” photos (dated in mid-March, 2018) on their Facebookphotopage (there are more than the ones I linked). One thing you can see is that while Cooper’s name is on the mural, he had other people working with him.
Located at 3430 Doverside Drive. This is off the southern entrance road that leads to the Lowes and Wallmart that are just north of Briley Parkway on Dickerson Pike. Your best bet for parking is probably the Murphy Express next door. There is a sidewalk on Doverside, so you could walk from the Wallmart parking lot, or just scramble down the hill. Get your car spiffed up and enjoy the art!
That’s what one of my professors in graduate school called Dr. Pepper. He is Texan, like me. Sure, we moved to Georgia when I was six, but I never lost the taste for Dr. Pepper. I drink the diet stuff now, and yes, I lost a lot of weight. Because I was drinking a LOT of Dr. Pepper. Wait, this is an art blog! This Dr. Pepper branded tank (presumably not a tank of Dr. Pepper) is at Tony’s Foodland, a grocery store in Joelton, on Clarksville Pike. Joelton is a very different part of Davidson County from what most people think of as Nashville. It’s much more rural, with actual farms, and houses with huge rural lots. But it’s as much a part of Metro Nashville-Davidson as Lower Broad, which is something that makes Nashville truly great. The Facebook page for Tony’s Foodland has only one picture of the tank with its current livery, which is dated July 13 of last year. I don’t think it’s much older than that, as I drove up there around that time and don’t remember seeing it.
Located at 5529 Clarksville Pike. This is just north of Old Hickory Boulevard. The tank is on the northwest side of the store. There is plenty of parking because it’s a grocery store. Grab a couple liters of Dr. Pepper and enjoy the art!
There’s a new mural in the 12 South neighborhood that’s been cropping up a lot on social media lately. People stand in line to get their picture taken in front of it. This is not it. But this is the place. When I do a Google image search for “Nashville mural,” this mural pops up first. Now, you might get something different, but it’s still likely to come up high on the list because for a long time, this Eastside Murals piece promoting the American Heart Association’s “Nashville at Heart” campaign featured in a whole lot of Instagram photos. Today, May 31, 2018, there is a marker on Google Maps for the “Nashville at Heart Mural.” Not too many murals get that level of recognition. But one day you’re at the top of the charts, and the next week you can’t get a gig at the Holiday Inn. Now “Nashville at Heart” has been replaced with an even jazzier mural. Do a search for #PeaceLoveGoodDeeds – you’ll find it. I suppose I’ll put it on this blog someday if I can get myself out of bed early enough to be there at dawn before the lines form. That’s how I got the picture above.
Located (formerly) at 2707 12th Avenue South, at the corner with Dallas Avenue, on the south wall of the Corner Music building. This is 12 South – parking isn’t easy, though if you are willing to walk a block or two, there’s free parking on some side streets. You might want to ride share over. While this piece is gone, the surrounding neighborhood has lots of interesting art. Many will have lines – Just a few gents is unlikely to have one. Be original.
This is a story of two murals. The building housing Northwest Liquors and Zap Market, located at the corner of Buchanan and D.B. Todd, lies at a prominent spot in the Buchanan Street neighborhood, so it’s a good place for a mural or two. Facing Buchanan is this Norf Collective piece signed by Woke3 that is an obvious companion to the mural featured in And her hair was an unfolded flower, featuring a male subject here instead of the female one seen in the other mural. (The website listed on the mural is a dead link.) On the south side of the building is a very different mural signed “Tracy the Rose 2016.” I can’t find anyone using that handle, but the subject is one that is found on some liquor stores. While not as ubiquitous as the tires painted on tire stores, they are other examples in town.
Located at 1613 Buchanan Street. There is plenty of parking at the liquor store, though cars are often parked in front of the murals so it might be advisable to visit on a Sunday.
Ah, the obtrusive fencing. Not every work of art comes with clean sight lines. This mural is found at the Germantown Pub, where you can also find the mural featured in Now I know my ABCs!. That mural is on a long board overlooking the parking lot on the south side of the building, while this mural is on the northern end of the building. It’s a Music City Murals project, business home of the artists Anthony Billups and Dean Tomasek. It is part of a promotional campaign by Four Roses Bourbon. That’s what the #HandCraftTheMoment is about. More and more businesses are figuring out that promoting art that someone might use as a backdrop for their next selfie is a good use of advertising dollars. There’s also a rose painted on the ground a few feet in front of the mural, shown below.
Located at 708 Monroe Street. The mural actually faces Rosa L. Parks Boulevard. There’s plenty of parking at Germantown Pub, so grab some grub and enjoy the art!
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.
Barbeque joints (along with their cousins the hot chicken spots) and music venues are all places where you have a good chance to find art. A lot of that has to with the fact that they are often local businesses, which are much more likely to sport outdoor art than corporate ventures. So it makes sense to find a music label advertised on the side of a BBQ restaurant. G’z BBQ and Catering (their Facebook page might be a better guide than their website) sports a hard-to-miss promotion for Muddy Roots Records, well known for its eponymous festival. The pig isn’t just a hint of the food inside, it’s also a long-standing symbol of Muddy Roots, and is found in a legacy mural just down the road I featured in The pig abides. The same artists involved in that one, Jason Galaz and Milton Chavez, did this one as well. Once again we find an example of the Batman Building used as shorthand for the downtown skyline, with the added touch of the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge.
Located at 925 Gallatin Avenue, near the corner with Granada Avenue. The mural is located on the south side of the building, easily visible to anyone driving north on Gallatin. There is a fair amount of parking at G’z BBQ, so get you some grub and enjoy the art!
This is post number 300. For this post, I’m updating on the art I know is now gone. The photo above is an Emily Miller piece once found at the corner of Main and McFerrin. Much of Miller’s work is deliberately temporary, drawn on paper and glued to outdoor walls. Her pieces are more durable than you might think, however, and in fact, this one was deliberately removed when the building was repainted. That’s the fate of most of the works listed here – they have been painted over. Others are gone because the building they stood on is gone.
The blog itself is getting a little better all the time. Statistics wise, since I started it in July 2016, 5450 people have visited the blog for a total of 11,006 page views. Modest, but it has been growing. From a couple hundred views a month when I got started, 800 and 900 has become common, it looks like the blog is about to close in on the second month in a row and third overall for more than 1000 views. The empire grows slowly.
All art is temporary, outdoor art in particular. A list, probably incomplete, of art I have chronicled that is gone or substantially erased. (I will be updating these posts in the coming weeks):