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Hidden art

Fire and Safety (Part 3) – In the alley

This photo is at an odd angle because of how narrow the alley is that hosts these three murals. The lie on the back (east) side of the Industrial Fire and Safety Inc. building on Ash Street in the Pie Town section of SoBro. The first two are by Audie Adams, who as part of Thoughts Manifested was a major contributor to the murals on the north and west side of the building as well. (See Part 1 and 2 below.) Somehow, Adams got a much better angle on the “wasp” mural than I did. Some of that may have been a better camera, but lying on the ground helped too! The brown mural at the end is by Jeff Bertrand. The image of the woman with a starry headdress shows up in some of his other pieces. Since I took these photos, a piece of fencing went up blocking this alley from the north side, perhaps to discourage homeless individuals from sleeping here. If you look close in the slide show below you’ll see there is no mural next to the last shot of the wasp mural. That’s because I photographed it first, in April 2017, when it was by itself, and took the other photos that October 2017 (I am nothing if not current!) after all the murals were finished.

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Part 1 Part 2

Located at 608 Ash Street. The new Division Street extension complicates access somewhat. The mural above faces into a parking lot and alley on the north side of the building, on the opposite side from Ash. It’s easily accessed through the parking lot entrance on Ewing Ave between Middleton St and Fogg St, or down the alley that forks off of 6th Ave a little south of Lafayette Ave. Parking here is easy.

The Delgado calacas

In a small shop in the collection of galleries and other businesses at 919 Gallatin Ave is a business with a long history. Delgado Guitars had its start as a family business in 1923 in the city of Torreón, Coahuila, in north-central Mexico. Over the last century, the family and the business moved many places, eventually winding up in Nashville. And over those years Delgado Guitars has maintained both instrument making traditions and Mexican cultural traditions. Thus the very Mexican subject of calacas and calaveras found in the mural on their front door. Calacas are the skeletons, often in fancy dress, that are so important in Mexican art, particularly in representations of the Day of the Dead, while the calaveras are brightly painted skulls also common in Mexican art. They have a long history, as political satire, but also as a reflection of Mexico’s roots in Mayan, Aztec, and other Amerindian cultures. The artist who produced this work comes from another part of the world. Olasubomi Aka-Bashorun was born in Lagos, Nigeria and grew up in Oklahoma. He now has a gallery in The Arcade, the DBO Gallery. While the Delgado mural is a different theme from much of his work, its bright, strong colors are very much like his other paintings. This mural verges on hidden art. Not only is it impossible to see from the road, but also, since it’s on a door, you won’t see it when Delgado Guitars is open! So you’ll need to come twice, right? Certainly you will if you want to see both the guitars and the mural.

Calacas mural street art Nashville

Calavera mural street art Nashville

Located at 919 Gallatin Avenue. There is a fair amount of parking available at the venue.

 

Stratus skyline

Skyline mural street art Nashville

This lovely skyline with a bit of a watercolor vibe stretches the “public art” definition a little bit. It can be seen from Antioch Pike, but it’s definitely blink-or-you-miss-it. It’s found on the training center of the Nashville branch of Stratus Building Solutions, which bills itself as “leading the way in health and environmentally conscious commercial cleaning services.” It’s by Hannah Holgate, an artist who also is the Frame Shop manager at Jerry’s Artarama on Main Street (where she partnered with Marshall Hall to produce the mural on the facade of the art store, which I’ll post about later). She says it’s her first solo mural, which makes it a pretty good start! Hopefully, she will be doing more murals in the future.

Located at 2123 Antioch Pike. It’s located on a building behind the main building you see from the road, facing approximately north. There is parking here, but this is also a working business so you might want to ask politely before driving around to the back, particularly on a work day.

Under hypnosis

Under Hypnosis mural street art Nashville

Feeling hypnotized? Certainly, this mural was meant to play with your vision. It appeared recently on the back side of Gym 5, and is by a local artist who goes by Sterbo (or terbosterbo). This alleyway is a busy place for art. Turn around from looking at this mural and you’ll see the one in Panda sky, and just to the left is a set of elaborate graffiti tags that cover what used to the elaborate graffiti tags found in Back in the alley. I’ll blog about the new tags sometime soon. This particular wall has seen a series of not very interesting scribbled tags. With some exceptions, taggers tend to be respectful of murals, so maybe the new mural will put a stop to that. In the meantime, it’s here to mess with your head. The symbol at the end is one used by Sterbo as something of a signature (see photos below).

Located at 952 Main Street. The installation is in fact in the alley, which can be accessed from 10th Street or McFerrin Avenue. There is some parking in this alley if you are just visiting.

Gabby’s

Gabby's mural street art Nashville

Normally I would try to avoid posting a photo of a mural with stuff piled in front of it, but the tables and chairs on this patio at Gabby’s Burgers & Fries are a permanent part of the decor. Gabby’s opened in 2009 in what for many years had been the site of the historic Hap Townes restaurant beloved by many. Seriously, click right now and read that article by one of Nashville’s greatest writers, Tim Ghianni. I’m sorry I never got a chance to eat there, but apparently, the burgers at Gabby’s are pretty good. Along with a new menu came new art. The website link for the artist Vince Herrera painted on the mural is dead, but it wasn’t too hard to track down his Facebook and Instagram pages. On Instagram, you can see a few photos that show the process and reveal a few features now blocked by furniture, as well as telling us that Herrera has help from Mari Cristina. Apparently, this mural went up in July 2013. I’ve driven by that spot many times, but only noticed it recently. From the road, it is in something of a blink-and-you-miss-it spot. Take the time to look behind buildings – sometimes there’s art back there!

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Located at 493 Humpries Street. The restaurant is actually at the corner of Chestnut and Hagan streets, near Greer Stadium, while its parking lot faces Humphries. The mural is on the back side of the building. There is parking at Gabby’s and nearby side streets.

Principality: Artis et Scientiae

LaRosa mural street art Nashville

Such is the name of this mural on the backside of PopStart on Gallatin Road. PopStart is a new gallery (you’ll find their Facebook page and their Instagram page more informative than the website). Dävid La Rosa is an artist featured at PopStart who produced this mural. Much of his work features animals and sacred geometry. This piece, with its butterfly shape and its geometric designs, seems to be something of both. “SDG” is a reference to a long quote about gratitude you’ll find on his webpage: “I am thankful for the inexhaustible Love that surrounds my going out and my coming in, for the good health that I enjoy; for the possibilities of realizing worthy goals. I am grateful for the endless creativity available to me by the sempiternal wisdom of the Name, for being led to fields of green pastures daily. I am grateful today and always, that I am indeed wealthy”  -SDG. The damaged hashtag should read “#limbism.”

Located at 4110 Gallatin Pike. The mural lies on the back side of the building. There are narrow driveways on both sides of the building that lead to some limited parking, and there are a few spaces in front. You could also conceivably park at the Mapco next door.

Bubbles

Bubbles Mural street art Nashville

Many people have seen the hemp mural by Mobe Oner (No of course it’s not marijuana! Why would you think that?) on Gallatin on the north side of the CBD oil dispensary LabCanna. Less visible is the much larger mural on the backside of the building, done around the same time. This mural has many artists, including Mobe Oner but also Chris “Zidekahedron” Zidek and Folek, and apparently others. There are some signature tags on the west side (see detail below). The bespectacled man with the two laser-eyed kittens on his shoulder is Bubbles, part of the cast of the Trailer Park Boys, something of a multi-media comedy crew. I’m calling this hidden art just because you’re unlikely to see it if you don’t drive down the alley behind LabCanna. There’s a lot of art in town found in less visible places.

Bubbles mural graffiti street art NashvilleBubbles mural graffiti street art NashvilleBubbles mural graffiti street art Nashville

Located at 1006 Gallatin Ave. There is parking in front and behind, as well as on side streets.

Eat Like a Champion

Fish & Pig mural street art Nashville

Sometimes art can be near a very busy spot and still be a little hidden. This piece by @maczorgan apparently went up in August 2017 and lies on a very busy stretch of Charlotte I drive down a lot. But, it faces away from Charlotte. Had I not had to take a detour, I would not have seen it. I thought about titling this post based on some riff about lipstick on a pig, but I couldn’t figure how to get the catfish in. So I went with The Ridge’s slogan instead. The Ridge is a primarily a pork barbeque and fried catfish place, but they have other stuff as well, like fish tacos. I can personally vouch for their Mexican street style corn.

Located on 333 54th Avenue North, just south of Charlotte Avenue. Technically, the mural is on the property of the Citgo next door, which is on the corner of 54th and Charlotte. There is street parking on 54th and parking at The Ridge, so grab some grub and enjoy the art!

El Nuevo Amanecer

Bar mural street art Nashville

The new dawn – that’s what El Nuevo Amanecer means. An interesting name for a bar, particularly since it’s not clear it’s even a going concern. Their Facebook page shows that they had a couple of shows last year, but nothing since September. The only review is from someone complaining about the noise. And this site that keeps track of business licenses lists Nuevo Amanecer as “Inactive Dissolved.” The artist is also mysterious. While I would guess whoever did this is likely one of the artists who specialize in decorating Latino businesses, those artists not only usually sign their work but add their phone number as well, in case you want to hire them. There’s nothing on this one. Given this is just a few blocks from the future soccer stadium, I imagine some developer will snatch it up soon enough. Get your selfies soon.

Located at 398 Rosedale Avenue. This is at the corner of Nolensville Road, along the 2200 block behind Restaurante El Paraiso. There is plenty of parking.

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