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nashville public art

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I believe in Basement East

I believe Nashville mural street art

Perhaps the most famous mural in Nashville, the most famous piece of art, period, is not one but multiple. It’s three, or four or even more, depending on what you decide to count. There are two completely official “I Believe in Nashville” murals, one in 12 South and one in Marathon Village (neither of which is on this blog yet). I say “completely official,” because those are the ones you find on IBelieveInNasvhille.com, the I Believe in Nashville Facebook page, and on the I Believe in Nashville Instagram page. There is also one on Shelby Street done by a local homeowner and not the original artist, Adrien Saporiti of DCXV Industries. There are takeoffs like the I Believe in Petsville mural by Leah Boorse, and an I Believe in Smashville mural by Saporiti himself. This one, on the west wall of The Basement East, is not signed by Saporiti, nor does it appear on any of his websites or social media, but it does sport the IBelieveInNashville.com website and Instagram page addresses, so I’ll call it semi-official. I didn’t see it scrolling through several pages of the #ibelieveinNashville hashtag on Instagram, though interestingly, one that does is the wings mural by Kelsey Montague, featured in Sometimes you have to be obvious and easily the biggest rival for Internet fame to the I Believe in Nashville series. I think that’s odd because the Basement East version is the best one for taking an actual selfie because it’s up high, and thus you can angle your phone and get a decent shot. The wall it’s on features a rotating series of concert murals and one other “permanent” mural of a skeleton. This mural, by the way, will be the 500th pin on the blog’s map. It’s not the 500th blog post – that honor went to 500 Pink Elephants back in July. Early in the blog, I was in the habit of using only one pin where there were multiple works of art, thus the discrepancy, but now I don’t do that and pin every piece. Note that not all of the pins on that map are for art that still exists – check the relevant blog post before making a special trip – but it does give you a good idea of where to find outdoor art in Nashville.

UPDATE: While the mural was spared, at least temporarily, this building was severely damaged by the March 3, 2020 tornado. The fate of the mural is unclear. See What we lost in the storm.

Located at 917 Woodland Street. The mural is on the west wall, facing downtown towards the river. Parking is complicated in this area, given the many businesses and that Basement East is a concert venue. There is street parking on the nearby side streets, 9th Street and McFerrin Avenue.

Exit In at 45

ExitInCentralDetail

I wouldn’t ordinarily use a detail shot like this as the header photo, but this Bryan Deese piece at Exit/In is so badly hemmed in by a porch at Hurry Back next door that the only way to take a shot of the full mural is at an extreme angle. (See below) This is the central part of the mural, the rest is in a slideshow at the end of this post. The mural honors the 45th anniversary of Exit/In, featuring images of just a handful of the luminaries who have played there over the decades, many of whom were still working to make a name for themselves when they took the stage at Elliston Place. Some of them are also name-checked on a wordy mural on the front side of the venue (See the slideshow). This is a neighborhood that I have largely neglected on this blog, in part because of the difficulty of finding any of the art without cars parked in front of it. 12th Ave South and Hillsboro Village present similar problems. I need to hit all these places bright and early in the morning!

ExitInFullSideways

Located at 2808 Elliston Place. The mural is on the west side of the building. Parking in this neighborhood is hard. Most street parking anywhere nearby is metered, and the venues and shops themselves have limited parking. Grab a ride share and make it part of your pub crawl!

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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.

UPDATE: This mural has been painted over.

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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