The Mahanay Bell Tower allows for art to be found in surprising places – on the rooftops of downtown Jefferson. Visitors can view the art by riding the elevator to the Paul Nally Observation Deck to view the scenic countryside but also find the unique art found on rooftops.
In May of 2022, a new rooftop art installation was spray-painted by local artist Dana Harrison. Dana had painted beautiful and colorful peonies on the west side of his restaurant, Peony Chinese Restaurant. He extended this installation to the rooftop.
The rooftop art installation in 2021 has been completed by renowned artist, Ryan Christenson, also known as “ARCY”. His rooftop mural of the “Old Man” is the fifth in Jefferson and is located on the roof of the Greater Life Chiropractic building on the square. Not only is this mural a true work of art, but it’s interactive, as you search to find the hidden mickey mouse within the mural. Come to Jefferson to check it out for yourself! Watch the video from KCCI news here: https://www.kcci.com/article/jefferson-iowas-new-mystery-mural-cant-be-seen-from-the-street/36316153
Tony Sims of Middle of Nowhere studio in Dana was chosen as the artist for the rooftop selected on Unger Insurance on Lincoln Way. It is called Spaceman with a nod to Paton’s native son Loren Shriver who is an astronaut. Tony Sims also painted the RAGBRAI themed piano for downtown in 2018.
A local artist, Nicole Friess-Schilling painted “Wild Woman on the Roof” on Art on the Fly. Nicole experimented with painting directly on the roof using just several colors on the black roof before the Bell Tower Festival of 2016.
The second piece was designed, painted and adhered to the roof by the Tower View Team members. It is a combination of four quilt squares painted on sheets of aluminum. The name is “Patches of Greene” since each recognizable square represents important aspects of Greene County – railroad crossing, card trick, antique tile and whirling windmill. This installation was completed in May of 2017.
The third installation was added in May of 2018. Lee & Sheryl Sloan worked with local artist Curt Nelson to design a piece of artwork that portrayed Sheri’s love for music. He designed “Music Straight From the Heart” and painted it directly on the rooftop of the Sloan’s building in the Columbian Block of downtown Jefferson.
Come take a look at all five!
Local artist, Stephanie Hammond created her piece called “Renewed Dreams” located on the top of her parent’s business, Skeeter Creek Fabricators Art & Antiques. This was the first roof top art installation but was recently retired. However, a piece of “Renewed Dreams” can be seen on the alley side of Skeeter Creek Fabricators on the north side of the square.