Uniquely Baton Rouge: Welcome to Old South

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At the corner of Myrtle and Perkins in Baton Rouge, an old abandoned building is coming back to life.

With the stroke of his brush, Jonathan Brown is doing his part to preserve the legacy of Old South Baton Rouge.

“You’d be amazed at what the little things could do” said Brown. “Just beautifying places could have a huge impact” he said.

Brown goes by the name Skinny Dope and with his brush as his pen and a building as his paper, he’s hard at work helping to rewrite the narrative of one of Baton Rouge’s oldest and richest neighborhoods.

“You can’t always go and rebuild everything so just beautifying stuff and painting over it we need that” he said.

The newly unveiled welcome to Old South mural is the latest installation of the walls project. It features familiar themes like shotgun styled houses and businesses and historical references of the neighborhood’s storied impact on Louisiana.

“Art changes your perspective” Brown said. “Like with music when you’re sad and you put on a happy song it makes you happy. If you see a happy painting it’s going to impact you subconsciously, whether you realize it or not, so people walking around they may be going through some things and they take in that moment and they’re not worried about their problems or what’s going on at home” Brown said.

Brown has created six murals with the walls project but says this is his most personal, putting a piece of himself on display for all to see, in hopes of helping others see the beauty of old south Baton Rouge.

“If I could do this all over that would be wonderful” Brown said. “Putting my spin on it and putting a piece of me in Baton Rouge” he said.

The mural is completed at the intersection of Myrtle and Perkins.

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