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Signs

King Solomon Gyros

Solomon Gyros sign mural street art Nashville

If you’ve ever driven down lower Gallatin, you’ve seen the sign. You may even have picked up a meal or twenty there. I usually get the combo plate, but this Scene article makes me think I’ll get the gyro sandwich next time I drop by King Solomon Gyros. Sadly, I do not know who made this sign. The business has exchanged hands in the last several months, and the current owners don’t know who the sign maker was. There’s also some reason to be concerned about the future of this business, as recently this property and the old church next door were bought by James Higgins and Richard Piliponis for $1.02 million. One would hope they don’t mess with a very successful take-out place. The two men, who also own Noble’s Kitchen & Beer Hall right down the street (site of the mural featured in A noble brew), seem to be planning on turning the former New Destiny Christian Fellowship into a pub named Eastwood Assembly. Some of the nearby neighbors have read the word “pub” to mean “bar” and have voiced opposition. The Nashville Post article previously linked also notes that the church building has structural issues that have put plans on hold for now. Again, one would hope Higgins and Piliponis have no plans for King Solomon’s besides collecting a reasonable rent.

Located at 716 Gallatin Ave, at the corner with Chicamgua Avenue, across from Kroger. Solomon has parking, and street parking is available, but really you should admire the mural as you pass through the drive-through!

Living Waters

Living Waters mural street art Nashville

About a month and a half ago, a new brewhouse and coffee shop opened on Trinity Lane, Living Waters Brewing. (Not “Brewery” as I originally typed. Think about it – both coffee and beer are brewed, so “Brewing” is a better name.) But several months before it opened, back in January, Living Waters acquired this mural, courtesy of Tara Marie Aversa (who now uses the name Tarabella Aversa on Instagram.) You can tell it was a cold month from a production shot she posted to her IG account. The design is Living Waters’ logo, a stylized wave, which is why it doesn’t have Aversa’s usual plethora of flowers. I also have to note Living Waters’ IG post about this mural that credits Aversa. Too often businesses do not credit the artists who do this kind of work, and Living Waters went further and noted the difficulty of the canvas – painting a circle on a ridged surface was no doubt a bit of a challenge. This building also contains CrossFit Rising Sun, which has a sign/mural by Folek Kelof.

Located at 1056 East Trinity Lane. The mural above is on the north side of the building, facing Trinity. The Rising Sun mural is on the east side. There is plenty of parking at this site.

A refurbished stalwart citizen

One of the very first posts on this blog was A Stalwart Nashville Citizen (July 3, 2016), highlighting the sign of Ironworkers Local 492 on Dickerson Road. But back then, our man in blue was simply gray and had a fair amount of rust as well. Sometime in the last year, 492 obviously thought it was time to spruce the guy up with some fresh paint! And it being Labor Day, it’s an obvious time to celebrate his sharp new look. Now his uniform, tools, gloves, and boots are much easier to make out. And with the new paint job, he will continue to watch over Dickerson Pike (and remind frequent drivers that Trinity Lane is just around the curve) for years to come.

Ironworkers sculpture street art Nashvile

 

Ironworkers sculpture street art Nashville

 

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At 2424 Dickerson Pike. The union office has a large parking lot, and unless the union workers are practing in the lot, you should be able to park there.

Colorful prints

In a less-trafficked part of Midtown, there’s a block with a lot of colorful art. On 17th street, the Eclipse Mart (now closed) has a couple of murals and right off that is Prison Alley, which is filled with graffiti murals, as is the east side of Printer’s Press, around the corner on State Street. The south side of Printer’s Press has these two murals, a collaboration between Kevin Bongang, an Atlanta artist who signs his work @bongangart, and Brandon Donahue, a local artist and TSU art professor. Bongang is responsible for the colorful extended sign partially obscured by shrubbery (if you look on his site he has some angled close-ups that help you see what’s behind the bushes), while Donahue did the Legos and the boy climbing over the wall (see below). Both men were also part of the Off the Wall project, as well as they now painted over Impermanent installation once found on 57th Avenue North. (I do plan to put the two graffiti walls on this blog at some point.)

Donahue Boy mural street art Nashville

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Located at 1618 State Street. Street parking is available.

 

Nashville Ready Mix

Having recently gotten praise for running an “exhaustive” blog on outdoor art in Nashville, I feel a little better about my earlier plan to feature today not another pretty mural (which I’ve been doing a lot of lately because, well, there are a lot of them) but instead this simple and beautiful sign for Nashville Ready Mix, a concrete company. According to that very spare website, they are Nashville’s only locally owned mix company supplying the construction industry. They have no doubt been busy lately. I don’t know who made the sign, or its age, but the weathering on it suggests it has been there for some time. The smaller sign on the west side of the building facing the road is even more weathered. Ready Mix has owned this building since 1992, so it may be quite old for a painted sign. Their trucks use the same livery, which hints at a corporate design firm as opposed to an individual artist. I’ll tell you something – if this sign were anywhere near Lower Broad, it would be all over Instagram. I think it would definitely make a good album cover. I should note I found this sign shortly after shooting the very pretty mural at TopGolf down the street – you should check it out. I’ll put it on the blog soon.

Located at 605 Cowan Street. The main sign is on the south side of the building.  There is parking here and next door, but your best bet is on the weekend when the businesses are closed. No street parking to speak of.

Tailgate Brewery, East Side

A couple months ago, I featured a small mural linked to Tailgate Brewery in A hoppy place to tailgate. That small, two-color mural, by Drew Lord, is part of Tailgate’s Demonbreun Street location. Recently, they expanded to lower Gallatin, right next to Nashville Biscuit House. And here Lord, who is Tailgate’s art director, has produced something much bolder and much more colorful. You have the tailgate, you have the brewer breaking open a barrel that sprays out multi-colored beer, and you have an umbrella to protect you from that spray. (The umbrella kind of looks like a made-to-order Instagram target.) When you go to check it out, walk abound to the backside of Nashville Biscuit House. There’s a hidden mural back there.

Tailgate mural street art Nashville

Located at 811 Gallatin Avenue. The mural is on the south side of the building. There is parking behind Tailgate, and at the Biscuit House after it closes in the afternoon. There is also street parking on Petway Avenue on the north side of the building.

Beaut Creations

In my last post, I wrote that I was planning (eventually) to extend this blog to the surrounding counties because I believe the outdoor art scenes in all these counties are organically connected. Case in point: A new mural on Jefferson Street by Murfreesboro artists Travis and Alicia Maynard, who work under the moniker Murfreesboro Murals. When I first saw it, the bold colors and large portraits of African-American women made me guess it was by JamersonSGC, who has a new portrait just a couple blocks away, but instead it’s by two artists new to this blog. Notice the clever use of nail polish bottles and applicators to fill the mural with even more color. Beaut Creations is not open as of this posting, but the building has recently undergone renovation, so it presumably will be open soon. There was a moped rental company here before, but it was probably too far from the tourist zone to succeed. On the opposite side of the driveway in front of this mural is a Norf Studios piece featured in Get healthy!

Beaut Portrait mural street art Nashville

Beaut Portrait mural street art Nashville

Located at 2037 Jefferson Street. The mural is on the east wall, facing a driveway. There is some limited business parking at 2035 and 2037. The nearest street parking is west past the interstate overpass.

Hands of creation

I seem to be on a bit of roll with religiously-themed art on churches, having recently done Set Free and Hands of charity. But, it’s also obvious that churches in Nashville are beginning to branch out with their visual presentation, jumping into Nashville’s mural scene. Zeal Church on Charlotte has recently gotten into the game. The work is by a Texas artist named Chloe Bennett (not to be confused with the actress Chloe Bennet, whose name only has one “t” in it). Two easily recognized themes are included, the hands of God and Adam found in Michelangelo’sThe Creation of Adam“(1512) found on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, floating before a stylized Nashville skyline. Unlike many other depictions of Nashville’s skyline, this work does not depict the skyline in full, but rather just a few recognizable buildings, including, of course, the Batman Building (cleverly including a door on the wall). To my knowledge, this is Bennett’s only work in Nashville. The Zeal pastor, Jd Ost, studied in Texas and that may be the connection. Zeal also has a giant “Z” on its east wall (see below). I don’t know who did it, but there is a picture of the artists working on it on Zeal’s Instagram page. UPDATE: I have since learned that Bennett also did the “Z.”

Zeal Z sign street art Nashville

Zeal is also aware of the social media game. On the sidewalk in front of Bennett’s mural, there’s a helpfully placed box where you should stand to get an ideal photo (see below). You know, in case you weren’t sure.

Zeal Instagram sign street art Nashville

Located at 5807 Charlotte Pike. The mural is on the north side of the church facing Charlotte. The church and the nearby Kroger have plenty of parking.

Set Free

Madison is not awash in outdoor art, so this particularly bright and bold recent addition to Madison’s visual fabric really stands out. It’s on the side of  Set Free Church on Gallatin. Set Free, housed in an historic storefront, is a church that emphasizes charity, particularly towards the homeless. That’s appropriate, as it’s set in one of the less prosperous parts of Davidson County. The artist is Max Gramajo, who goes by Maxx242. He’s based out of Southern California in the Los Angeles area, and as far as I know, this is his first work in the Nashville area. The pastor at Set Free, Roosevelt Sargent, who goes by “Pastor Flo,” also has connections to the Los Angeles area, so it’s not so surprising this Los Angeles artist wound up doing work in Nashville. (Sargent has a picture on his Instagram feed that shows the mural in progress.) I like how even a Californian knows to put the Batman Building in a Nashville mural! Also credited in the signature box (see below) are Jason Galaz and Milton Chavez (and on his Instagram post about the mural the artist also credits “Super Dave.”)

Set Free Mural street art Nshville

Signatures

Located at 505 Gallatin Pike South.  The mural is no the north side of the building facing Harris Street.

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