I just got back home from Tuscaloosa, my family’s little corner of “Sweet Home Alabama.”
Over the past two years, I’ve been making a point of stopping by Toumey Hall on the campus of the University of Alabama when I was in town to check on the progress of a gigantic art project underway there. Caleb O’Connor and a few apprentice artists have been working on a series of 16 massive murals that document the history of Tuscaloosa County.
Here’s the great news: most of the murals (14 of 16) are now hanging in the brand new Federal Courthouse in downtown Tuscaloosa!
The paintings are absolutely fabulous!
I have to admit I was a little disappointed in their placement, because you can’t see them when you first step into the building. Instead, you must go through a security checkpoint, then make your way to the elevator or stairs to go up one floor to see them. (There are no cameras allowed, or I would have posted my own pictures.)
When I realized two of the masterpieces were not yet finished, I made my way back over to the UofA campus to congratulate Caleb and see if I could see the works in progress, but, alas, the building was locked tight and I could not get in.
If you live in near Tuscaloosa or visit there, please make a point of going by to see them. (I was told that groups are allowed to visit, but you might want to call ahead to make arrangements.)
My hope is that a book or at least a guide of some sort will be published telling about the images included in each painting. They are truly spectacular!