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WEB EXCLUSIVE A shelf of books on Martin Street, a cardinal on the sidewalk at South Salisbury Street, a giant letter “E” on the side of a building on East Cabarrus Street. These are just some of the 100-plus unique pieces of public art you’ll currently find scattered around downtown Raleigh. As you walk around and bike through the area, use Downtown Raleigh Alliance’s interactive map to try and see all downtown’s murals. Here, we’ve listed a few of our favorites we challenge you to seek out–take a photo and tag us on Instagram! For the full list of murals, visit downtownraleigh.org/explore/public-art.
“Untitled” by Luke Buchanan, 2020
428 S McDowell Street
Luke Buchanan, the local artist behind the famous All Are Welcome mural on the side of Ashley Christensen’s Poole’side Pies building, created a new mural to pay tribute to Raleigh’s restaurants and bars. The painting depicts an oak tree with branches phasing through spring, summer, winter and fall, along with roots covered in the names of several local businesses including Kings, Death & Taxes and Bida Manda.
“Sardines” by Scott Nurkin, 2019
500 W Peace Street
A head-turning spectacle on the side of an office building, Scott Nurkin’s Peace Street painting is, just as expected from the title, a half-opened can of sardines—sardine smell not included. Nurkin is also the artist behind the John Prine mural on East Martin Street.
“Indian Summer” by Louise “Ouizi” Jones, 2018
227 W Davie Street
This gorgeous, floral painting, completed in time to promote the Georgia O’Keeffe exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Art in fall of 2018, serves as the perfect backdrop for a spring photoshoot. Ouizi is a Detroit-based painter known especially for her large scale floral mural installations which can be found all over the United States.
“Push The Ship”, Jank Archives, 2019
505 S Blount Street
Land ho! This ship-shaped mural at LUMP Gallery reads “push the ship,” translated from a Lithuanian expression, “stumk laivą,” that means “buzz off.” Janks Archive is a project exploring insult humor from cultures around the world.
“Raleigh Skyline” by Alec Chambers
615 W Morgan Street
On the side of the recently-closed Calavera Empanadas building, you’ll find a perfectly rendered painting of Raleigh’s skyline—signature buildings, trees and all. When you can’t get a good photo of the actual skyline, a photo of this magnificent mural works just as well.
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