Bookstore Mural
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The Bookstore Mural

The Bookstore Mural is an outdoor mural by Richard Wolk located on the corner of Liberty Street and State Street in downtown Ann Arbor, Michigan. The mural is an Ann Arbor icon, and is one of the city's most well-known pieces of public art. The work, colloquially referred to as the Bookstore Mural, was painted in 1984, and was commissioned by David's Books, the building's former occupants.[1] The mural depicts the headshots of Woody Allen, Edgar Allan Poe, Hermann Hesse, Franz Kafka, and Anaïs Nin. It is approximately 60 by 20 feet (18 by 6 m).


The bookstore mural was painted on the side of the building at 300 South State Street, which is currently owned by Oxford Company.[2][3] Built in 1901, the building has housed several businesses, including David's Books, the Kenmore Restaurant, and Discount Records, where a young Iggy Pop worked before he moved to Chicago.[4][5]Potbelly Sandwich Works currently occupies the building.

One of the most notable aspects of the work is that the subjects are not easily identifiable, nor is the name of the piece widely known. This is illustrated by the fact that it is often referred to by different names, including: The Poet Mural,[4]Liberty Street Mural,[1]The Bookstore Mural,[1] and East Liberty Street Wall Mural.[6]

Several respected news sources, such as the Michigan Daily and, choose not to refer to it by any name.[7][8] A 2010 article by detailed how the mural was not collectively named, and whether it should be.[8]

In 2010, the mural gained significant media attention as the original painter was hired to touch it up, 26 years after he originally painted it.[8] The mural was featured in several publications, including the cover of the Ann Arbor Observer, and on official movie posters for the 2010 film, Answer This![9][10][11]


In 2010, the mural was named one of the "Best Places in Ann Arbor for Wedding Photos" by the website[6]


  1. ^ a b c "Liberty Street Mural - Ann Arbor Michigan - Murals on". 2007-09-16. Retrieved .
  2. ^ "Oxford Company - Oxford Corporate Interiors - Oxford Property Management". Archived from the original on 2011-07-15. Retrieved .
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b "Architecture | Retail Market | 300-302 South State Street, Ann Arbor". OX Studio Inc. Retrieved .
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b Alison Goldman. "Best Places in Ann Arbor For Wedding Photos - Best Ann Arbor Wedding Photos Sites - Best Places For Photos in Ann Arbor - By". Retrieved .
  7. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-15. Retrieved .CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ a b c Oct 17, 2010 at 8:00 AM [Oct 17, 2010] (2010-10-17). "Original painter restores Ann Arbor's famous mural featuring Woody Allen". Retrieved .CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-07-15. Retrieved .CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-07-15. Retrieved .CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)

External links

Coordinates: 42°16?45?N 83°44?28?W / 42.2793°N 83.7410°W / 42.2793; -83.7410

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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