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ArtsATL

Your Source For The Arts In Atlanta

A Falcons game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium might be seen by tens of thousands. A poetry reading in a coffeehouse might be heard by ten. Street art is often the same way. Because of its prominent location, the John Lewis Hero mural towering above the downtown connector has been seen by thousands of Atlantans, but Charmaine Minniefield’s obscurely located mural on the Westside BeltLine is difficult to see even for people walking or biking there. Here’s a guide to finding Minniefield’s mural and other hidden street art gems in Atlanta. Click on the Location link to see the map for each mural.

1. Artist: Lacey Longino

Lacey Longino is an artist-in-residence at the Skylark Apartments complex. Her colorful work often features floral and natural themes. The artist’s bio describes her style as follows: “She is known for bright, imaginative works that combine funky patterns with realistic portraits. Beneath the surface, the work indicates her deep attachment to family and the nostalgic concepts of ‘home.’ This mural (above) creates a balance between realistic elements toward the bottom and stylized elements above. The sun really brings this four-story-tall artwork to life for those lucky enough to catch it in the late afternoon.

Location: On the back side of the central stair tower of this building in the northeast corner of the Skylark Apartments, 1099 Boulevard.

2. Artist: Jurell Cayetano

Here’s how Brooklyn native and current Atlantan Jurell Cayetano describes his artwork: “He transforms photo references of peers and other people of color into narrative paintings full of expression and realism.” Expressionism and realism seem to be at odds with each other, but Cayetano blends these two apparent rivals masterfully. The dynamic tension generated spills over into the enigmatic subject matter — a woman sunbathing in the snow. The secluded location only intensifies the mystery.Location: Toward the end of the alley to the right of Noni’s Restaurant at 357 Edgewood Avenue in the historic Sweet Auburn neighborhood.

3. Artists: Killamari, Mr. Totem, Niki Zarrabi, Chris Alvarez/Courtney Hicks

In October 2018, the Mutiny Artworks collective sponsored a live mural painting event called ARToberfest where different artists painted 27 murals along a 600-foot-long wall. The variety of the murals is impressive. Styles range from graffiti writing to whimsical fantasy, abstract and realism. This spectacular collection of murals lined up on a single wall is second only to Forward Warrior’s Wylie Street wall, but not many people know about it.

A sampling of murals by four of the artists, clockwise from upper left: Killamari, Mr. Totem, Niki Zarrabi, and Chris Alvarez/Courtney Hicks.

Location: Between buildings 1 and 2 of the MET Atlanta complex directly across from the West End MARTA station on Murphy Avenue.

4. Artist: Ashley Dopson

At the start of the Covid pandemic, mural activity in Atlanta had almost come to a halt but the murder of George Floyd in May 2020 ignited a creative outpouring of protest murals. This work by teacher and muralist Ashley Dopson was our city’s 1,000th mural. Many of her works reflect the experiences of Black women through a combination of childhood joy and worldly refinement. Her “Fish are Jumping and the Cotton is High” was selected by the Cabbagetown Initiative and ATL1000 to occupy the prestigious spot at the entrance to the Krog Street Tunnel. She was featured muralist for Elevate Atlanta in 2020.

Ashley Dobson

Location: This horizontal mural is painted on the driveway of the Kipp Strive Primary School at 1444 Lucille Avenue about 200 feet in from the street.

5. Artist: Charmaine Minniefield

Charmaine Minniefield’s murals often feature Black women who influenced history. This mural celebrates Adrienne McNeil Herndon, an actress, professor, activist and teacher. She was one of the first African American faculty members of Atlanta University, where she was an associate of W.E.B. DuBois. The mural also features quotes from Atlanta’s young Black women about why studying history is important. Unfortunately, the side of the building holding the mural can’t be seen from the trail. Just before the trail joins White Street, it curves to the left. Instead of following the curve, go straight for about 100 feet. That’s where the mural comes into view.

Charmaine Minniefield muralLocation: Atlanta BeltLine Westside Trail behind 1326 White Street.

6. Artist: Eric Nine

Unless you make a specific point of walking through the side parking lot of Union EAV, you will probably never notice this mural featuring Eric Nine’s trademark multi-colored elephant. Nine is an artist-in-residence at the Skylark Apartments. He summarizes his ethos on Instagram: “I use my art to promote love and equality and the idea that perfection doesn’t exist, but there’s beauty in everything.”  This mural is in good company right next to one by nationally known artist Adam K. Fujita.

Eric Nine muralLocation: On the side of Union EAV at 485 Flat Shoals Avenue in East Atlanta Village.

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