Outdoor Art in Olde Towne
Portsmouth is a great place to see outdoor art! These projects were sponsored by the local non-profit group, Support Portsmouth Public Art in conjunction with the Portsmouth Museums, Friends of the Portsmouth Public Library and Portsmouth Museum & Fine Arts Commission.
If you happen to visit on the Second Saturday from April – October you can enjoy a guided art tour!
Bike the Arts District ~ 10:30 am High Street Landing
Guided Community Bicycle Ride through the Portsmouth Cultural Arts DistrictCelebrate art and culture in Olde Towne Portsmouth on a 3 mile guided bicycle tour visiting new and historic art landmarks, points of interest, and murals along the way. Free (ages 12 and up). Bring your own bicycle and helmet. Please call 757 405-3500 to register and ensure your swag bag.
Walk the Arts ~ 4-5 pm Middle Street Pedestrian Mall
Guided Art Walk (1.25 miles) Enjoy strolling through the new Portsmouth Cultural Arts District to view more than a dozen examples of public art that are scattered throughout Olde Towne. On this free guided walking tour, you will see whimsical murals like a two-story tall speckled trout as well as unique art that honors historic Portsmouth citizens and events.
As you are strolling through the streets in Olde Towne, you will notice some beautiful, fun and even unexpected art. Here are some of the murals and statues you might find:
“The First Amendment Sculpture” honoring the First Amendment: Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Press is located on the landing in front of the Portsmouth Public Library at 601 Court Street.
“Playful Children” a mural by Sam Welty, is on the east, second-floor wall of 307 High Street.
“Tommy Newsom, Ruth Brown, and Bill Deal”, three murals of famous musicians from Portsmouth, all painted by Mandy Smith, are displayed on 430 High Street (the old Colony Theater).
“I’ve Been Kissed” a bronze toad sculpture by Pokey Park, is on the Middle Street Mall in front of the Children’s Museum of Virginia.
“Commodore James Barron”, a mural of one of the famous historic Portsmouth citizens, painted by Sam Welty, is on the south wall of 606 Court Street.
“Speckled Trout”, a mural painted by Sam Welty, is on the north side of 464 Dinwiddie Street.