5 Points Mural: Time for Change

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It’s time to say goodbye to an East Nashville icon – one that has been the backdrop of thousands of photos over the past decade. The mural on the side of what is currently East Side Cycles will become a new hipster mural, the project starting on June 23rd. According to Bob of Bongo World, the project has been in the works for quite some time, and is finally being realized:

Bob told the neighborhood “I want the neighborhood to know that we will soon be changing a mural that has been in East Nashville for a long time. Nine years after I said I would change the mural on the 5-Points building now housing Eastside Cycle, it’s finally going to happen. A former Bongo World employee will be painting a new mural starting June 23.  The project will take about a week. We also recently added a second mural on the Bongo Java East Cafe building.  With the help of Color Theory Studios, we hired Sterling Goller Brown of Eastside Murals to add The Boxquiat.   Will soon be putting a third mural on this wall — which will feature changes roughly every six months.”

full mural

Here’s the email from Bob to the East Nashville Community:

bongo java email

According to Carol Norton, “the original mural was paid for with a grant from the Arts Commission, secured by Rediscover East, back in the day and executed during the first East Nashville Art Festival that was done by Rediscover East. The artist and design was selected through a competitive process, and during the EN Arts Weekend, neighbors participated in the painting, and was completed by the artist.”

There has been a lot of feedback from the community, and we even heard some heated debate about it in a local coffee shop early Saturday morning. Although some of the older generation would prefer to hold on to what they know, the general consensus is that it is time for a change. So often in East Nashville we see neighbors try to hold on to things that have been unchanged for decades, when a fresh coat of paint with some new ides would really freshen things up – which is certainly the case here.

Norton recalls “the Five Points mural was the beginning of showcasing how artistic and special East Nashville is.  “Back in the day” there were not so many of us, and “we” were the only ones that knew.  How many wall murals were there?  How about all of none.  Five Points was the first.  And it says right there, that East Nashville is the center of the universe!” While we can appreciate that she was around ‘back in the day’ it’s time for the new East Nashville residents to have their turn, and for folks like Norton to sit back and enjoy the progress. The good news is the mural will no longer be a near ten year commitment, as plans are for the mural to be updated/changed about every 6 months moving forward – truly an indicator of the way things change on this side of the river.

boxer mural
Boxquiat, by Sterling Goller Brown/Eastside Murals. Bongo Java East Cafe building.


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4 Thoughts to “5 Points Mural: Time for Change”

  1. JD Carter

    It’s “The East Side Cycles,” not “Cycle.” It helped make 5 Points what it is today, and its owner had no say in the change of the mural.

    1. thanks for the correction, our typo! We’re aware the decision was made by Bob from Bongo World who owns the actual structure.

  2. Donna Henry

    As someone who passes the dancing bears mural every morning on the way to work, my first response was, “What does that have to do with East Nashville, or even Nashville in general?” As one of the old timers who first discovered East Nashville in the mid eighties, I was dismayed at the thought of a mural that had become an icon being replaced with what seemed to be a somewhat arbitrary image. Now that I realize the wall will become a revolving gallery for different artists, I look forward to seeing my morning landscape change periodically.

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