by: Scott Perry
The many faces of Willie Nelson, by Anne Genung. At The Proletariat Gallery, Galveston TX.
Willie Nelson smiles moments after the unveiling of his statue on West 2nd Street, also known as Willie Nelson Boulevard, on Friday April 20, 2012. The statue was created by Philadelphia artist Clete Shields, and given to the city by the nonprofit Capital Area Statues Inc. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
by: Peter Blackstock
Walk the streets of Austin, and sooner or later you’ll encounter Willie Nelson. Visions of our city’s greatest living icon pop up all over town, from SoCo to the Drag to the Red River District to, well, of course, the stretch of Second Street now known as Willie Nelson Boulevard. Recent new murals that have popped up this year gave us an idea to send photographer Jay Janner on a mission to photograph as many artistic renderings of Willie as we could find. The statue in front of ACL Live is probably the most impressive landmark, but it’s just one of many. The captions tell the stories of these indelible works, which help to ensure that the Red Headed Stranger will always remain familiar in Austin. Willie joins the Austin City Limits Music Festival party next weekend, helping to close out the festival on Oct. 9.
Austin artist Samson Barboza paints a mural of Willie Nelson at Bluebonnet Studios, which is under construction on South Lamar Boulevard, on Tuesday September 27, 2016. “When you think of Texas heroes one of the guys you think of is Willie Nelson.”, Barboza said. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
A 60-foot-by-20-foot mural of Willie Nelson towers over fest goers during South by Southwest March 19, 2016. Austin artist Wiley Ross completed the mural in February 2016 on the building on East 7th Street at Neches Street. “Willie embodies the spirit of Austin,” says Ross, who has painted several Austin murals including a one on Manchaca Road and Lamar Boulevard. “We wanted to honor Willie and give back to Austin.” After securing permission from building owners, Ross says he spent 80 hours over six continuous days working on the mural in order to complete it before the Heart of Texas Rockfest on March 16-19, which also coincides with South by Southwest. The giant portrait of Nelson will serve as a backdrop for the rock festival. “My favorite part of the mural is that anywhere you go, Willie’s eyes follow you,” Ross says. “It’s like he’s watching over downtown Austin.” JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Mural artists Tom Bauman, top, and Kerry Awn apply anti-graffiti sealant to their 1974 “Austintatious” mural at the 23rd Street Market during a restoration project on Tuesday June 24, 2014. Willie Nelson can be seen standing next to a red pickup in the bottom left corner. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
A two-dimensional cutout of Willie Nelson looks down on Guadalupe Street from a balcony at ACL Live at the Moody Theater, home of “Austin City Limits,” Monday September 12, 2016. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Willie Nelson, with his guitar Trigger, stands next to a red pickup in this small detail of the ‘Austintatious’ mural, which was created at the 23rd Street Renaissance Market in 1974 by artists Kerry Awn, Tom Bauman and Rick Turner. Photographed July 14, 2016. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
The “Willie Nelson For President” mural on STAG Provisions for Men was painted by Joe Swec from a drawing by Jacqui Oakley and a design by Erick Montes. Photographed Thursday July 14, 2016. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
A portrait of Willie Nelson in the alley behind La Zona Rosa commemorates his April 22, 1995 concert at the defunct live music venue. This Willie portrait is part of the larger La Zona Rosa Musicians mural painted by Joe Swec from drawings by artist Jacqui Oakley of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Photographed on September 11, 2016. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Willie Nelson watches over the Drag on September 11, 2016. Willie is one of several musicians depicted in a series of portraits by Austin graffiti artist Frederico Archuleta on the old Varsity Theater/Tower Records building. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Read article and seethe art:
Artist Sam Barboza stands beside his painting of Willie Nelson, at the new Blue Bonnet studios off South Lamar, in Austin, Texas. The new community is designed for low income single adults and musicians.
At the Texas v. Notre Dame half-time show last weekend, the Longhorn Band paid special tribute to Austin’s beloved Willie Nelson by forming his name on the field. A few days later, the Red Headed Stranger gave special thanks.
Nelson posted a photo of the band’s formation on his Facebook account on Tuesday. He wrote “It was such an honor to see this during the UT vs Notre Dame game Sunday. Thank you The University of Texas Longhorn Band.”
The band promptly responded to Nelson on its own Facebook page with “Always an honor to play one of our favorite artists at halftime! Thanks, Willie Nelson!”
Entertainment from last weekend just doesn’t seem to end. It was the same one during which baby Bevo XV made his debut, Matthew McConaughey gave a special speech,someone thinks they may have seen Abigail Fisher and of course, Longhorns beat the Leprechauns.
We wonder what this weekend’s game will bring. The Longhorns play this Saturday, at 6 p.m. at the Darrell K Royal-Memorial Stadium.
Willie would like it.
The judge did.
“It” is Marilyn Forlow’s portrait of Willie Nelson, country music superstar, rendered in glaze on a porcelain tile. It earned Marilyn not only a blue ribbon in the portrait category but also a purple ribbon for Best in Show at this year’s Missouri State Fair.
Yep. Willie would like it.
But don’t call the portrait “it.” Marilyn, who’s been painting for more than 50 years but painting on porcelain for just 10 years or so, refers to the framed portrait as “him.”
“He’s absolutely the best thing I’ve ever done by myself,” Marilyn said, noting that teachers often tweak an uncooperative spot on a painting for a student artist. “I’m so proud of him.”
Marilyn says two people helped her to decide to paint Willie.
I love that the U of Texas Longhorn Marching Band honored Willie Nelson at their home opener football game. Too cool, huh. I wonder what song they played? No youtube video has surfaced, but I’m keeping my eyes open.
“My friend Charles Phillip Vaughn aka CP Vaughn drew this picture of Willie Nelson! CP is the best and this one is especially awesome! It looks like a dang photograph from a camera! Wow!! I am speechless!
This photo belongs to my friend George Goss in Terlingua and it hangs at his new Bar in The Terlingua Ranch! Thank You CP for your amazing talent and artwork!!!!”
— Kem Watts