Category Archives: public art

Cincinnati’s downtown murals

Cincinnati has some great public art.   Cincinnati ArtWorks started its public mural program in 2007 and has since completed some 70 murals throughout the city. Among all of the murals in this project the Jim Tarbell mural in Over the Rhine is one of my favorites. Jim Tarbell is a popular Cincinnati politician (you don’t often see those two words side by side) who was named my mayoral proclamation “Mr Cincinnati” in 2012.  But the other personage evoked here is even more interesting (to me) is Peanut Jim Shelton.  Evidently Jim Tarbell appropriated Peanut Jim’s sartorial flair for the campaign trail.


Peanut Jim Shelton was a Cincinnati iconic personage.  He sold roasted peanuts from his coal-fired roaster outside the baseball park at Crosley Field.  He died in 1982 at the age of 93.

And here is Mr. Cincinnati

Here are some more great downtown murals

The Golden Muse

Martha, the Last Passenger Pigeon (an interesting story that I may tell some other time).

This is Energy and Grace by Cincinnati artist, Kim Krause

Visualingual posted an interesting perspective on this project. Downtown Cincinnati has an amazing variety of Ghost Signs, the pentimenti of large exterior advertising that can also be considered public art.  Sometimes this older work is sacrificed for the new murals. Here is a link to that post.