True colors abound in Knoxville
In a city where a giant golden sphere stands as a prominent part of the skyline, it’s no wonder that colors abound all year long. Here’s a look at four of the most colorful spots in Knoxville.
Weaving a colorful story
Brightly colored lines and shapes weave their way up a series of 43, 10-foot wide steps on the edge of Downtown Knoxville. This brilliant piece of public art at the corner of Cumberland Avenue and 11th was created by Baltimore artists, Jessie Unterhalter and Katey Truhn. On their website, they explain that Appalachian weavings were the inspiration for the art work. Created in 2017, the painted stairs have quickly become a favorite spot for taking pictures or for entering World’s Fair Park.
A stairway filled with stories
Knoxville’s Old City has been a hot spot for a few decades now. The area once known mostly for its nightlife is now filled with activity all day long as new businesses continue to move in to this historic part of Knoxville. At the corner of Gay Street and Jackson Avenue a unique set of stairs takes you on a journey through Knoxville history and culture as you make your way between Downtown and the Old City. Robin Easter Design transformed the stairs into a scavenger hunt where you match illustrations on the stairwell to 41 facts tied to notable people, places and things in Knoxville. Just visit downtownknox.org/stories to find the 41 fun facts and a checklist to take with you when you visit.
A welcome sign
Before the age of selfies, facebook and texting, people would send postcards to people when they went on vacation or traveled far from home. Today, when you visit Knoxville you can just put yourself in the postcard and send it the 21st century way. Just head down to the city’s visitor’s center at the corner of Gay and Summit walk over to the side of the building and take a gander at “Postcard from Knoxville” a massive mural featuring the city’s historic theaters, attractions and music. It was created in 2013 by Bobbie Crews, Ken Britton, Walt Fieldsa, Curtis Glover & Randall Starnes. Be sure and visit the Visitor’s Center while you there, especially if WDVX is hosting one of its Blue Plate Special concerts.
Art in the Alley
Tucked away in an alley behind Market Square between Union and Wall Avenues you’ll find one of the most interesting collections of public art in Downtown Knoxville. Business owners along Strong Alley have allowed artists to use this space as a canvas to showcase their color and creativity. Whether it’s Nintendo’s Mario, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or a shark in the water, you’ll find something that catches your attention. And the best part, the artwork is always changing and evolving, so no two trips through the Alley are the same.