Nostalgia Painting

Good morning from my studio in East Nashville. Looks like we are having a stormy couple of days. That’s always an issue for me, and probably most folks here in East due to the tornado of 2020, and for the long term Easties, the tornado of ’98. Somethings we just never fully get over.This week I had an usual project for a client. This was to be a present for a gentleman whose mother took him frequently to a Ben Franklin store to get a toy or game, etc. Many of you may not know of this chain of “five and dime” stores. There are currently no Ben Franklin stores left in Middle Tennessee, though they are still in business in other places. The stores were here in the past, and that’s the basis of my client’s friend’s memories.I my own experience, when I was a child my mother worked on Third Avenue downtown in Nashville, and I would periodically ride the bus downtown in the summer to have lunch. We would walk up the alley and through the Arcade to Woolworth’s on Fifth, and have lunch at the counter. The Woolworth’s lunch counter also became a center of black equality efforts.But my memories were of the candy bin and the toys. When Tom Morales renovated the store several years ago, he recreated the lunch counter exactly as it had been those decades ago. The first time I went to the new building and saw the counter, I had the most unusual feeling of being back in time. The feeling of being out of the present was literally overwhelming.So I hope this painting of the Ben Franklin store brings that feeling of time travel to my client’s friend. Sometimes we all could use a trip back in time. Thanks, and stay safe and well.