I would probably be two or three pounds lighter if Five Points Pizza did not exist. Opened about six and a half years ago in where else, Five Points, it quickly became a popular spot for a pie or a slice. A couple of the night shift take-out workers know my name. Oh, right, we were talking about art! A few months ago this Nathan Brown piece went up in the alley that separates Five Points Pizza from Battered and Fried. Again, it’s another one of Brown’s colorful geometry problems, and it’s also another example of Google Fiber promoting its brand through art sponsorship. I had to shoot it at an odd angle because of the geometry of the alley. A shot from the other side is below.
Located at 1012 Woodland Street. The mural faces west and is impossible to miss from Woodland if you are headed east. There are paid lots in the core of Five Points, but free street parking is available if you walk a couple blocks.
Barbeque joints (along with their cousins the hot chicken spots) and music venues are all places where you have a good chance to find art. A lot of that has to with the fact that they are often local businesses, which are much more likely to sport outdoor art than corporate ventures. So it makes sense to find a music label advertised on the side of a BBQ restaurant. G’z BBQ and Catering (their Facebook page might be a better guide than their website) sports a hard-to-miss promotion for Muddy Roots Records, well known for its eponymous festival. The pig isn’t just a hint of the food inside, it’s also a long-standing symbol of Muddy Roots, and is found in a legacy mural just down the road I featured in The pig abides. The same artists involved in that one, Jason Galaz and Milton Chavez, did this one as well. Once again we find an example of the Batman Building used as shorthand for the downtown skyline, with the added touch of the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge.
Located at 925 Gallatin Avenue, near the corner with Granada Avenue. The mural is located on the south side of the building, easily visible to anyone driving north on Gallatin. There is a fair amount of parking at G’z BBQ, so get you some grub and enjoy the art!
Sometime more than a year ago (this blog is nothing if not on the spot!), this whimsical piece appeared on the fence of the parking lot that adjoins the apartment building at Fatherland and South 10th. As it boldly proclaims, this is an Eastside Murals project, the business name of Ian Lawrence and Sterling Goller-Brown. The apartment building is by all appearances a low-income rental, something that used to be common in East Nashville but is much less so today. Hopefully, both it and the mural have a long future, as we need lots of both art and affordable housing.
Located at 300 10th Street South. The mural lies right off the entrance to the alley that runs parallel to and between Fatherland and Boscobel. There is street parking on Fatherland, though you might have to walk a ways. Make it part of your Five Points crawl and enjoy the art!
This is post number 300. For this post, I’m updating on the art I know is now gone. The photo above is an Emily Miller piece once found at the corner of Main and McFerrin. Much of Miller’s work is deliberately temporary, drawn on paper and glued to outdoor walls. Her pieces are more durable than you might think, however, and in fact, this one was deliberately removed when the building was repainted. That’s the fate of most of the works listed here – they have been painted over. Others are gone because the building they stood on is gone.
The blog itself is getting a little better all the time. Statistics wise, since I started it in July 2016, 5450 people have visited the blog for a total of 11,006 page views. Modest, but it has been growing. From a couple hundred views a month when I got started, 800 and 900 has become common, it looks like the blog is about to close in on the second month in a row and third overall for more than 1000 views. The empire grows slowly.
All art is temporary, outdoor art in particular. A list, probably incomplete, of art I have chronicled that is gone or substantially erased. (I will be updating these posts in the coming weeks):
Not all great art is from professional artists. Some of it comes from the kids in the neighborhood. This Eastwood home sports a brightly colored fence of work from clearly enthusiastic young artists. It includes a chalkboard labeled “commUNITY.” When I passed by, there was a little box of chalk beneath it so a passerby might add some art of their own. I think my favorite panel is the flag, but they are all great. There are two panels of flowers separate from the main group that you’ll find in the slideshow below.
Located at 301 Scott Avenue, at the corner with Benjamin Street. There is plenty of free street parking in this neighborhood. This is a private home, so please be respectful.
Sometimes I am slow to post about art I see frequently, thinking that I’ll have plenty of chances later. The 4 Way Market in Lockeland Springs is just such a place. For years there were these goofy images on the front, including a humorously bad image of an American Express card. Remember the story about the botched restoration of a painting of Jesus? The American Express Centurion that once graced 4 Way’s facade was about on that level. You can see a little of what I mean here and on their Yelp page. But back in September, before I ever blogged about it, 4 Way got a splashy new overhaul, and the older work was lost. But there sure is a lot more color now. Even the once sad flower box has gotten a bright, colorful overhaul (see below). I asked the owner who did the work. All he could remember was, “Some guy I found in Alabama.” Well done, Alabama guy. (If anyone knows more, leave a comment.)
Located at 1401 Fatherland Street, at the corner with 14th Avenue. There is plenty of parking at 4 Way, so grab some sundries and enjoy the art!
There is so much art going up all the time, that sometimes stuff I recorded long ago falls through the cracks. Such as with Nathan Brown’s “Bootstrap.” Brown has been featured on this blog before for his rainbow prism work down on Nolensville Rd., a style he’s repeated in the Gulch and in East Nashville in works I’ll be posting about later. This work is in what he calls his “word collage” style. The name comes from Bootstrap Architecture + Construction (who’s building it is found on) who sponsored the mural along with the Chamber of Commerce East Nashville. According to Brown, “The idea was to create a word collage that embodied Bootstrap’s ethos, lifestyle, the neighborhood, East Nashville and positivity in general.” I love it when artists actually provide insight into their work, Makes this blog a lot easier to do! I also applaud Bootstrap as another company that understands the importance of outdoor art both in promoting their business and building the social fabric and identity of a neighborhood. Besides his website linked at the top, you can also follow Brown on Instagram. This mural calls out for selfies. Get your crew down there and get a portrait!
Located 4010 Gallatin Road. If you are coming from the south, the mural is impossible to miss. (Really, I should have blogged about it months ago.) Bootstrap as very limited parking – two spaces. You can probably get away with parking for a short while behind the motel next door or the market two doors south.
The bathrooms at the easternmost baseball fields in Shelby Park are a fair more spectacular than all the others. Two artists who go by Sterbo and Downs have graced this modest cinder block building with art and a name. On the east side, we see a pitcher and a batter facing off, while on the west we find a declaration of local pride, Shelby Bottoms style. The doors to the bathrooms are also fancied up a bit.
Located, as the building declares, at 1801 Davidson Street. Even Google Maps doesn’t know this street name. The bathroom is found at the far east and south of Shelby Park, close to the river, just before you get to the railroad trellis. Plenty of free parking in the park, though you may have to walk a bit. If there are no games in action, the bathrooms may be found behind locked gates.
Located at 1200 Porter Road, at the corner with Greenwood Avenue. Vinyl Tap in the old Family Wash site is across the street on Greenwood, while Cafe Roze is catty-corner across Porter, and Southen Grist Brewing is directly across Porter. All of which explains why the parking you see in the picture is now paid parking. Welcome to Nashville. There is some limited street parking on Greenwood.