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Gaia

Gaia mural street art Nashville

Filling a window in Banker’s Alley is this colorful face, called “Gaia.” It’s a product of Skye Walker, who has recently produced three murals in town that I know of. Besides this one, he created the large mural featured in Keep a breast and another large mural on Gallatin Road I will be featuring soon. All three murals are part of Walker’s Sea2Sea Mural Tour, which you can follow on his Instagram page. (Check the hashtag #sea2seamuraltour.) Kelly Yazdi modeled for the mural, and Ashley Seagroves of Studio 208 worked on the logistics of getting the mural made. It’s painted on wood panels inserted into the window. “Gaia” is the ancient Greek Earth goddess, as well as a term used to refer both to the Earth’s biosphere and the concept that the Earth can be viewed holistically as a living organism. All three interpretations seem to fit this image.

Located at 218 Third Avenue North, on the outer wall of Black Rabbit. It’s almost halfway between Second and Third Avenue, in an alley that lies halfway between Chruch and Union. It’s steps away from the mural featured in A rainbow of pride. This is downtown – plenty of parking, almost none of it free.

The Listening Room

Listening Room mural sign street art Nashville

The music venue The Listening Room Cafe has had many incarnations. Founded by Chris Blair, it first appeared in Franklin in 2006. Blair moved it to Cummins Station in 2008, and again to its current location on 4th Avenue un 2012. And it is on 4th Avenue that we find on a stark white wall this sign featuring The Listening Room’s logo, created by Michael Cooper of Murals and More. On the bottom right of the photo, you can see his usual signature, which as always includes his phone number.

Located at 618 4th Avenue South. There is some limited parking at the Listening Room and some street parking on Elm Street. As the mural faces a parking lot, your best bet is to visit early in the day, well before show time. Enjoy the music and enjoy the art!

As long as the grass shall grow

Meulman mural street art Nashville

On this blog, I have been a little slow on documenting the big murals downtown, and this is one of the last I’ve gotten to. Like many of these murals, this one is part of the Nashville Walls Project. It was created in 2016 (aren’t I timely?) by the Dutch artist Niels Shoe Meulman. It’s done in a style he calls “Calligrafiti,” mixing elements of graffiti and calligraphy. In this case, it was also a messy process, as you can see from the photo series on the NWP website. The words come from the chorus of a song written by Peter LaFarge and performed by Johnny Cash, “As Long as the Grass Shall Grow.” It’s found on Cash’s 1964 album, Bitter Tears: Ballads of the American Indian, a concept album about the history and problems of Native Americans. It’s a reference to the broken promises in many of the treaties signed between the United States and Native Americans.

As long as the moon shall rise, as long as the rivers flow
As long as the sun will shine, as long as the grass shall grow

Located at 144 Fifth Avenue North, the address of the L & C Garage. It lies directly behind the Downtown Presbyterian Church. Obviously, there is parking, but as this is downtown, so none of the nearby parking is free.

Windows and rooms

Abstract mural street art Nashville

This one has been up for a while, and I photographed it ages ago, but I had mistakenly filed it as something I had already blogged about. Certainly, anyone who walks down Church Street anywhere near Fifth is going to have seen it. It’s a Nashville Walls Project sponsored piece, done by the Mexican artist Favio Martinez, who goes by Curiot. (Learn a little more about him here – his own page doesn’t have biographical information.) There’s no title for this work, but Curiot makes clever use of the building’s features in a way that suggests windows into strange rooms and landscapes, hence the title for this blog post. I have seen it misattributed to Rone, who did not this one but the one right next to it featured in Forget the past.

Located at 530 Church Street. There’s a parking lot right in front (common for downtown art), but like most of the nearby parking, it is not free. There is free parking for patrons of the downtown branch of Nashville Public Library which is just down the street to the east, but you need validation. So do some research and enjoy the art!

 

Beautiful Decay

BeautifulDecay

This mural manages to be both very large and yet somewhat hidden as well, located as it in an alleyway behind the Downtown Presbyterian Church. Part of the Nashville Walls Project, this mural, called “Beautiful Decay,” is by the Berlin-based American artist Tavar Zawacki. Zawacki started his career as an anonymous graffiti artist using the handle “ABOVE.” In time, he made use of an “above arrow” as his signature. Now that he has come out of the shadows, arrows are still a motif in his work. You can read his description of this mural on his website, and the Nashville Walls Project has a nice photo spread showing the creation of the mural. The trompe l’oeil lends itself to some obvious picture ideas.

Located at 144 5th Avenue North. That’s the address of the parking garage it’s painted on. The church it’s behind is at 154 5th Avenue North, at the corner with Church Street. This is downtown – plenty of parking, almost none of it free.

Vinyl Bunker

VinylBunker.jpg

This blog is devoted to outdoor art, and the mural above mostly qualifies, as it is just inside the 5th Avenue entrance to the L&C Parking Garage and if the wind blows from any westerly or northern direction, the rain would definitely hit it. And why does a portrait of Pat Reedy grace a parking garage wall? Because in the basement of the same garage is The Vinyl Bunker, a record store owned by Jason Galaz (the artist who made the mural) and is also headquarters for Muddy Roots, the music festival and record label. And no surprise, Reedy records for that label. So, synergy?

Located at 144 5th Avenue North. The entrance to the garage opens on to the alley behind Downtown Presbyterian Church. Look for the giant mural of words (which I have not yet featured on the blog) – this mural is just below that one.

 

Rivive

ReviveFullWall

No, I didn’t misspell “revive.” This Nashville Walls Project mural is by Beau Stanton and was done in collaboration with Rivive, a non-profit that looks to raise awareness about and improve river resources in the Nashville area. So talk to them about my spell checker going nuts! The water theme is clear, with a Greco-Roman woman pouring out water, along with fish and other water life. Blanton has some nice photos on his website (including a timelapse video) as does Nashville Walls Project (including photos of the production on the mural). It’s a hard mural to shoot, given its enormous size and the fact there is a building across the street. Certainly, it makes the downtown version of Blush easy to find!  (The writing on the far corner of the building is part of another mural I haven’t blogged about yet.)

Located at 144 5th Avenue North. This is downtown, so there is plenty of parking, none of it free.

The Johnny Cash Mural

Johnny Cash Mural street art Nashville

Sure, there’s more than one mural featuring Johnny Cash in this town. But this was one of the first, if not the very first. Or at least, the original one on this spot was. Bryan Deese, Audie Adams and Ryan Shrader of Thoughts Manifested produced a Cash mural on this spot not long after Cash’s death in 2003. However, by late 2012 it was in very bad shape, so the same three artists painted a new Cash mural to replace the original (and I do not know how close the second version is to the first). There is a video of them making the second mural. Now six years on, the second mural is somewhat worse for wear, and it faces more threats than just the weather and traffic smog. The little building it’s on is surrounded by some very expensive real estate, and it’s hard to imagine no developer has any interest in it. If you want your picture taken in front of it, you might want to do so soon.

UPDATE: This building has been slated for demolition. Get your self immediately!

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Located at 300 4th Avenue South at the corner of 4th and Molloy Street. The mural faces Molloy. This is downtown, so lots of parking, almost none of it free.

Recycling

FondObjectMain.jpg

Art comes and goes depending on the needs of the sponsors. When I wrote about the art on the old Turnip Green/Plateone building, I wondered what would happen to the Seth Prestwood (@moldymonk) pieces on the north and south sides of the building since both businesses had left. So far, the one on the north side is unchanged. Recently, however, Jason Galaz incorporated the piece on the south side into new work featuring the artists Pat Reedy, Alicia Bognanno of Bully and Joshua Hedley. I suppose that’s a fancy way of saying Galaz painted over Prestwood’s mural, but the remaining visible parts of the older mural make a nice framing device for the new one. Galaz signs the mural with his name and #MuddyRoots. Galaz has done Muddy Roots Records murals before, such as the one found in BBQ music. Reedy is a Muddy Roots recording artist, though I’m not sure what relationship the other two artists have to the label/music festival. Certainly, musicians make sense on this wall, as the building now houses a branch of Fond Object.  Muddy Roots has sponsored temporary murals before, like the one in Wanda, so it remains to be seen how long this one will remain in place. (The Wanda mural was on the side of the other branch of Fond Object, so there’s another link.)

FondObject2

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Located at 535 Fourth Avenue South. This is downtown, so not much in the way of free parking. There are paid lost nearby.

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