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Endangered art

Sorry you missed the show

Concerrt Promotion

I’m normally a little wary about featuring concert ad murals. They get painted over quick. But this one is for a show back in March, it’s still there, the building seems only part occupied, and it’s a very nice mural, so who knows how long it will last? Still, we have to call this temporary art. BJ The Chicago Kid, Xavier Omär, and Kamau gave a rockin’ show on March 20th – or so I imagine! The artist is Bryan Deese, who has done a number of murals around town. He signs this piece with his website address, but that leads to a blog not updated since 2014. Try his Instagram account for more up to date information about his work. And if you go visit this one and it’s gone, you can still see a Bryan Deese mural across the street.

Located at 2622 Jefferson Street. The mural is on the west side of the building. There is plenty of parking at 2622 and nearby businesses. If the church on the west side is out of session, there is lots of parking there.

Going soon?

FatBottom

The Fluffo Matress Factory/Fat Bottom Brewery sign at 9th and Main may be going away soon. Fat Bottom Brewery, founded by Ben Bredesen (son of former Mayor and former Governor Phil Bredesen) moved out of the old Fluffo factory to a new bigger spot in The Nations on 44th Ave North in summer 2016. The brewery part of the building has been empty since, but construction has recently begun on a major upgrade of the building, and it remains to be seen if the new owners and tenants will maintain the tradition of preserving signs from previous tenants. Let’s call this endangered art.

Located at 900 Main Street, at the corner with 9th Street. There’s a little street parking, and you could park across the street at the Weiss Liquor Store and Weiss Market, but don’t stay long if you’re not buying!

All Around and outta here

AllAroundFull

One thing this blog seeks to do is document art before it’s gone. There is a rezoning sign out in front of this property. This low wall and concrete floor is about all that’s left of All Around Pressure Washing on Dickerson Road. So while it sits and awaits replacement by some mixed use development, it’s become a canvas for taggers. The requested zoning is MUL-A, which, according to Metro, is for “Mixed Use Limited, intended for a moderate intensity mixture of residential, retail, and office uses.” The “A” is meant for walkable neighborhoods. On this stretch of Dickerson I’m not sure what this means, but maybe a stretch of sidewalk will go in. I can’t decipher the tags, but the one on the right is the same style as the one found in V! Something. There is an apparent signature – “Ask Noss V.” In any event, I imagine these tags are not long for the world. Call it endangered art.

Located at 3968 Dickerson Pike, on the west side of the road, a little north of Clean Quick Carpet Service (at 3492). When I was there is was possible to pull in and park on site.

For that perfect smile

Crest

I have to wonder how long this one is going to be around. Located near Plaza Art on Middleton, it lies right next to a major graffiti installation that was just painted over. This part of SoBro/Pie Town has been fairly resistant to gentrification, but that can’t last. The market forces are very powerful. I believe this says “Crest.” There’s one very much like it in Cheltenham, PA, on the north side of Philadelphia. (As of this posting, third row on that page. Look for “Crest Graffiti Cheltenham”.) I suspect it’s the product of an out of towner, because I don’t think I’ve seen this tag elsewhere, and the DayGlo color scheme is unusual here in Nashville. Even if it survives gentrification, for the time being, it’s peeling, likely because it faces the afternoon sun every day unshaded.

Located at 617 Middleton Street. Nearby parking is easy. The mural is on the west side of the building, facing Plaza Art.

These are not the tags you’re looking for

PennigtonBendStormTroopers (2)

Big murals are going in down in the Gulch and on Charlotte, while new murals have appeared recently on Gallatin and elsewhere. The Dragon of Dragon Park continues its restoration. Metro Arts is about to unveil its civil rights installation next to City Hall (Friday, APril 21, 2:00 p.m.). But sometimes on NPArt, we go small. Particularly when art is likely to be short-lived. The Pennington Bend/River Trace neighborhood is a somewhat upscale rural community north of Opry Mills. The Briley Parkway bridge that crosses the river at the northwest corner of the bend has clearly gotten its share of graffiti tags, that have all been quickly painted over, from the looks of it. So our three Stormtroopers here probably won’t last too long, But then they are Stormtroopers – they are used to a quick demise.

Located on Pennigton Bridge Road, as it goes under Briley Parkway, near the intersection with Music Valley Drive. The Stormtroopers are on a wall on the east of the road, the side opposite of the river. There is a small area across the street in front of a gate you can park.

PennigtonStormTroopersFull

The usual suspects

JeffesronBridgeFull

Sometimes, when searching for outdoor art, you wind up in less than pleasant places. The easternmost support of the Jefferson Street bridge, where Jefferson passes over an unnamed access road just before reaching Cowan Street, is not a place Nashvillians would ordinarily take tourists, and unless you work at one of the industrial sites nearby, nor is it a place Nashvillians would visit themselves. Unless you are homeless, or a graffiti artist. There’s plenty of evidence of people spending time here – discarded bottles, food wrappers, and the like, as well as a mattress it’s hard to imagine anyone sleeping on. But the seclusion that some homeless people appreciate also attracts graffiti artists, given access to a large concrete wall. There are many layers of tags here, with each artist painting over the previous one. If you ever visit, you’re likely to see some names other that what I captured when I found it. Someone has labeled the current crop “usual suspects,” hence the blog title.  There is also an interesting “eye” on a nearby pylon (featured below). I should note that the panel on the far right currently has a reference to sexual assault. It’s not clear what the meaning is – I have chosen not to include a close-up of that part.

Located under the Jefferson Street bridge just west of Cowan, next to the Cross Point Church. To reach it, take Oldham Street west towards the river and turn right on the access road just after the railroad tracks. Just before you get to the bridge, there’s a dirt road on the right that leads to the graffiti. I suspect this will get paved as part of the large construction project underway just past the bridge. This is an industrial area, so try not to park where you’ll block large trucks.

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Drive away

HuntersTop

Five Points in East Nashville was not always the place you went for bar hopping, fine dining, and trendy shops. It used to be the place you got your car fixed. Margot’s, Burger Up, East Side Smiles* and the Family Dollar all used to be service stations, the kind of places that filled your tank and replaced your spark plugs. Gym 5 was an auto repair place, and Battered and Fried was once where you found Jackson’s, which sold tires, tubes, and batteries and had a fleet of trucks to deliver them around town. Beyond the Edge at one point was a welding shop that no doubt helped repair cars. There were probably more. Now only Firestone and Main Street Tires are left in the immediate area. Hunter’s Custom Automotive is the latest to leave (they’ve moved to Trinity Lane), its property snatched up to be developed as restaurant space by Fresh Hospitality. Already the small building they owned across the street has undergone major renovations (no longer will Hunter’s employees play the dangerous game of crossing the street right where Main makes a right angle curve and become Gallatin – the light went in not long before they moved). What will happen to the Hunter’s murals is unknown at the moment, but in all likelihood, they are doomed, as are the glittery signs. I only learned this past weekend that those signs make a fair amount of noise when it’s windy. Whooooooosh.

UPDATE: I drove past Hunter’s this morning (3/28/17) and saw that the brick facade the mural up top is on is being dismantled, and the mural with it. This one is a goner.

Located at 975 Main Street. Until it becomes a construction site, you can park in the Hunter’s lot. Climb the stairs to get a better look at the main mural, though I recommend against clambering on to the roof. The sign and the mural above both face south, while the  King of Chrome mural is on the west side of the building. (*East Side Smiles may be a different building, but there did used to be a service station at that spot. Family Dollar may also be a “new” building.)

HuntersLowHuntersSign

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