Raleigh Arts has unveiled the first ArtBeats installation of 2021. The murals, inspired by Raleigh’s Black Main Street, are by local artist TJ Mundy and honor the historically Black commercial district on Hargett St. + aim to inform the public about the street’s historical importance.
From ~1910-1960, E. Hargett St. (from Fayetteville St. to Moore Square) was filled with Black owned or operated businesses — including barbershops, pharmacies, drug stores, retailers + the offices of lawyers and doctors. However, many of these businesses no longer exist. Each mural in TJ’s series highlights a former Black Main Street business and some of its unique history.
The 4 businesses highlighted are:
- Lightner Arcade and Hotel
- Grand United Order of Odd Fellows Building
- Delany-Evans Building
- Hamlin Drug Store
Want to see the murals in-person? They are located on E. Hargett St., between Blount and Wilmington.
ArtBeats is a temporary public art project that was launched in 2018 by the Department of Transportation and Raleigh Arts. Each season, the project features several artists’ work throughout downtown. However, this year, ArtBeats was temporarily paused due to an unexpected paint shortage. Raleigh Arts is hoping to acquire more paint and finish installing the other 9 artists’ murals this summer.
The other artists creating works for this season include Gabriela Amaya-Baron, Brenda Brokke, Karen Coachman, Nicole Drake, Paul Friedrich, Huda Kamal, Delvin Parker, Justin Perry, and Kiara Sanders.