The Short North mural is getting new attention through an online campaign

In a city in which the public art of past generations often disappears without a warning as culture gives way to condos, a nascent effort to preserve a 25-year-old mural in the Short North is receiving a welcome reaction.

“That’s My Dad,” a mural by late Columbus folk artist Smoky Brown, was part of a multi-artist project commissioned in 1995 by the since-closed Short Stop Teen Center, housed in the basement of a church at 1066 N. High St., according to Richard Duarte Brown, one of the artists who participated, along with Brown, Leni Anderson and Leon Page.

The current preservation effort was initiated by Dan Dougan, former owner of local music clubs Stache’s and, for 10 years, Little Brother’s, located next door to Short Stop at 1100 N. High St., the current site of Standard Hall. On a recent walk through his former haunts, Dougan came upon the Smoky Brown mural. Knowing how rapidly the neighborhood has changed, he reached out to members of the art community to see what could be done to preserve the work.

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