Travelers love to pose in front of the murals of Nashville, but Knoxville is quickly approaching as Tennessee’s hub for street art and murals.
Supported by local businesses and initiatives like Walls for Women, you can find them all over the city. Many are inspired by the nearby mountains.
We’ve highlighted a few, but Visit Knoxville has a whole map of locations throughout the city for mural lovers. Joyride also offers a guided tour.
Downtown Knoxville and Market Square Murals
Start your journey downtown, where the majority of the murals are located. The first image, Postcards from Knoxville, is on the side of the Knoxville Visitor’s Center and was painted by Bobbie Crews, Ken Britton, Walt Fieldsa, Curtis Glover & Randall Starnes 2013.
Strong Alley is another favorite spot for artists, constantly changing with designs. It’s located between Union and Wall avenues. One of the longtime murals is of Dolly Parton, who grew up in the nearby Smokies. Her portrait was originally created by Colton Valentine but after a vandal damaged it, it was updated by Megan Lingerfelt.
Lingerfelt also painted Windows to the Smokies, off Wall Avenue, which features the windows of buildings in the Market Square area and the beautiful scenery of the mountains. She also did the Downtown Knoxville mural on the opposite end of Strong Alley.
University of Tennessee Murals
Graduate Knoxville is an outpost of the whimsical hotel brand that sets up in college towns. On the side of the building is a Knoxville-centric mural painted by The Happy Moon. The best view is from the side streets.
World’s Fair Park Murals
World’s Fair Park is a hub for activity, formerly the site of the 1982 event. It sits between downtown and the University of Tennessee campus.
These 43 colorful stairs, called Weaving Rainbow Mountain, are a popular spot for photos. They were painted by Jessie Unterhalter and Katey Truhn.
Across Henley Street is a the Fireflies mural, which features a quote from Knoxville native Cormac McCarthy. It was painted by artist Robert Felker.
South Knoxville Murals
“Victoria” is one of the murals produced by Walls for Women, an initiative honoring the passage of the 19th amendment. Paris Woodhull produced this mural at Printshop Beer Co.
There’s another mural at Handy Dandy Market that is inspired by the city and the Tennessee flag. South City Pizza has a fun pizza mural as well.
Other Neighborhood Murals
In Old North Knoxville, check out the Greetings from Knoxville mural next to K Brew. It was created in association with Greetings Tour, a group that produces postcard-style murals, with Dominic Corry. Artist Per-Ole Lind also created a number of murals in this area with the 6th Avenue Mural Project.
The Old City has plenty of murals, including in an alley off South Central Avenue and at bars and restaurants. The Dreambikes mural is a favorite, featuring flowers and bees, by Curtis Glover.
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