nashville public art

No art left behind



The pig abides


For some time now, the Live True Vintage building on Gallatin has advertised Muddy Roots Records and its festivals. (The link in the picture is dead.) Furthermore, there was some interesting graffiti art on the wall facing Elvira and the back of the building.  But Live True decamped to Old Hickory early last year, and the new occupants have finally gotten around to repainting the building. All the art is gone, except for our banjo playing pig and the sign right above. And he’s now against a black background, a photo I’ll have to add later, as there’s been a truck in front of it recently. The purpose of this blog is not just to celebrate and inform, but also to archive, as outdoor art is particularly ephemeral. I’m not sure about the artists. The tags and hashtags don’t lead anyplace useful. If the new occupants add new art, I’ll be sure to blog about it.


Located at 3121 Gallatin Pike, at the corner with Elvira Avenue. The surviving musical pig is on the south side of the building, easily visible from Gallatin. At present, it is possible to park in back, and in a pinch, you could park at Plasma Biological Services across the street.

In Concert in Donelson!


“In Concert,” by Randy L. Purcell, is a difficult mural to photograph. I chose not to stand in the middle of a busy section of Lebanon Pike near the crest of a blind hill, so the main photo is a bit askew. The mural itself was a community project, part of Metro Arts Commission’s 2012 “Artober” celebration. All across it are the names of individuals who donated to the project, which was also meant to serve as something of a gateway to Donelson. It has its own Facebook page, and you can also watch a time lapse video of its creation. The building it sits on used to be Johnson’s Furniture. These days it’s empty, with a sign outside promising offices coming soon – in 2015. It’s hard to imagine though that future occupants would want to tamper with it. Purcell has shown up on this blog before. He also was commissioned to do one of Metro Art’s bicycle racks, the one featured in Bee Cycle.

Located at 2620 Lebanon Pike. The mural lies on the south side of the building, facing a section of Lebanon Pike that is pedestrian unfriendly. Parking at nearby businesses on Old Lebanon Pike (on the north side of the building) is possible. The property is partially fenced, but it’s reasonably easy to access the mural.


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Semper fi


From time to time, the Marines invade an American city, not as an act of war, but for recruitment and public relations. Almost a year ago, in mid-September, it was Nashville’s turn. Marines flew over our skies, participated in all kinds of community events, and being Marines, made an amphibious assault on the riverbank downtown. You can watch some of the week’s activities here. They also painted a mural. Six Marine artists combined Marine and Nashville iconography in a prominent mural in the heart of the Eight Avenue antiques district. The linked article doesn’t name the artists, but a small portrait of six Marines gives us the names Lance Corporals Milliot, Varneli, and Sturdivant, Seargents McKelvey and Reguska, and Staff Seargent Bilicich. Oorah!

Located at 2106 Eighth Avenue South, on the north wall of the Douglas Corner Cafe. There’s parking right in front, but good luck. Some street parking and at neighboring businesses available. Shop for an antique treasure, catch a show at Douglas Corner, and enjoy the art!

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Back with a kick


Your intrepid blogger’s Puerto Rican vacation is over, and the blog is up and running again. Truth be told, I gathered enough material to start another blog on Puerto Rican art and run it for a year or more! But on this blog, it’s all about Nashville. “Glitchmule,” by Herb Williams, went up in 2015 on the west wall of the new Family Wash digs on 5th Avenue (also home to part of the 615 Center complex). Williams is responsible not only for this very large mural but also some of the smallest murals in town. Keep your eyes out around town for rainbow striped animals no more than about a foot or so wide – they are his work (unless he’s gained an imitator). You’ll find one at Three Crow Bar and another at Old Made Good, for example.

Located at 626 Main Street. There is very limited parking at Family Wash, and street parking on the adjacent part of 7th fills up quickly. I recommend parking across Main on 7th, as there is a light at that intersection and thus it’s safe to cross Main there.


Mi casa es su casa


There is a certain style to Latino markets, and Mi Casa Supermercado on Dickerson fits the bill. We have the display of items available in the store, the woman working with…well, it looks like she has a potato in her hands, but next to her is a traditional stove top for cooking tortillas and what might be a brewing pot of pozole. Pozole is basically Mexican pork-hominy stew. It sticks to the ribs and cures all illnesses — or at least makes you feel better! The artist is José F. Vargas who, as is traditional with these Latino market murals, give us his phone number, in case you want your own pastoral Mexican mural. In the slideshow below, I include the door (with its Nashville theme) and the fruits and vegetables on the front windows.

Located at 2917 Dickerson Pike. Lots of available parking. Load up on all your Mexican fiesta needs and enjoy the art!

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Flower power


I have written before that chain stores are the worst places to look for public art. So I was surprised to find what looks like permitted art on the back of the Green Hills CVS. This could, of course, been put up without permission, but that seems unlikely. The style, the placement, the rust stain, and the fact that Google street view shows it’s been up since at least February of last year suggests permitted art. It is on the part of the building that is a separate retail space from the CVS (currently unoccupied), so that may have something to do with it. It is a rare piece of public art on a stretch of road dominated by chains, professional offices and high-end retail, none very conducive to public art. Given all the people stuck in traffic most of the time on that stretch of Hillsboro, some more art might improve people’s mood a bit.

Located at 3801 Hillsboro Pike. The flower is on the back of the building, facing the Orange Theory gym on Crestmoor, and is not visible from Hillsboro Pike. There’s CVS parking around the building, and a parking garage under the gym. Fill up on unnecessary plastic objects and enjoy the 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.

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