NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AMANDA GREER) -- The Nashville Arcade has been a staple of Music City since the early 1900s and rarely has a shortage of visitors, but on the first Saturday of every month, the Arcade is bustling with life.
Musicians play on the street corner, shoppers weave their way through the crowds, and artists are preparing to showcase their work.
The monthly Art Crawl is in full swing, and on the second floor of the Arcade, hidden among embroidered clothing in the Brikolaj gallery, I found Daniel Jackson Lane, a 19-year-old contemporary artist based in Nashville.
His work is inspired by Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring, and is abstract and modern in style, featuring vivid colors and graffiti-style caricatures.
While other artists work in the comforts of a studio, Lane is a live painter.
If you’re not familiar with the term, live painting is considered to be a visual performance art in which the artist completes a painting in a public setting in real time.
“I paint at live music festivals. I paint at shows,” Lane explained. “Usually there are bands playing and I have a mobile art studio that I set up and I just kind of hangout and have a good time and paint.”
Lane discovered his passion for art during a time of personal struggle.
Lane’s first taste of “adulthood” was a hard pill to swallow, and like so many millennials he was struggling to balance inconsistent jobs, living on his own, and his first serious relationship.
“I just had a really hard patch of my life and I didn’t really have very many people that I felt like I could turn to, or you know, connect with,” said Lane. “I fell in love with it and have been obsessed with doing it ever since. I’d probably be dead if it weren’t for this sh*t.”
An old bed frame, gifted from a roommate, and some old paint he found in his parent’s garage is how he got his start. Now, Lane has an installation of his art in the Frothy Monkey on Fifth Ave. and is set to have his first solo exhibit at the crawl on Aug. 05.
Lane, and many of the other artists that participate in the crawl, recognize how big the monthly event is, drawing thousands of visitors in just three short hours. He hopes the crawl will be the thing that jumpstarts his career as an artist.
“A lot of important people are walking around and all it’s gonna take to set it off is the right person to see it,” said Lane. “Everything’s an opportunity. You just gotta take them.”
If you’d like to take a look at his art, you can check out his Instagram at luxurioussurroundings, or you can visit him at this month’s art crawl.
The Nashville Art Crawl is a free event that takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. on the first Saturday of every month.
The majority of the galleries and exhibits are located on Fifth Ave. in what has been dubbed “The Avenue of Arts” and in the Historic Arcade of Music City. Other exhibits and galleries can be found scattered about downtown Nashville.