Recently Ray Preston of KMOV, channel 4, did a story,
which can still be viewed on line; “St Louis Proud: The Story Behind Merferd.”
Ray spent an entire morning with my art and Arborculture
Apprentices, Christopher Smith, Nehemiah Stone, and myself.
THIS story begins with the DRIVE NICE sign on highway 70.
One night a man in a tinted widow car road raged one of my daughters on the lawless strip of 70 between the Arch and our city of Ferguson.
So I painted Merferd saying
This sign lasted for three years …
… until Merferd’s old enemies the LOW DOWNS, a graffiti gang, found a way up and tagged over him.
Two homeless friends got up on the roof and painted it white again. St Louis’ homeless love Merferd, and Merferd loves them.
My apprentices, 15 years old Nehemiah (from the south side), and 14 year old Christopher of Berkley, hung around with me for several days …
WHAT was Merferd going to say? He initially was going to say “Welcome to Missouri.”
After discussion with Alderman Bandon Frazier-Bosely, (who is sick at heart with all the crime and murder in north St. Louis), and consulting with a couple other friends …
… He is presently saying “FATHER” along with “Malachi 4:6”.
The West side of the Billboard plugs a St Louis band of a friend of mine.
7 Short Documentaries Including The Man Behind The Merferds at the St. Louis International Film Festival
The flood wall feud has another participant and this time he didn't bother with the art part. But Merferd had an answer to that:
Merferd is praying over the evil one who is overcome with the Love of God.
"It's the goodness of God that leads men to repentance." -- Roman's 2:4
After Merferd came out from behind the evil one and put his hand on his head, the Tennessee tager's fans went bonkers and were livid. One even threatening to break my hands. At that point Merferd went from pulling up the eye brow and sticking his little finger in his ear, to jamming a tooth brush in his mouth. The green teeth were getting to us all anyway.
One evening, in the University City Loop Phil and Merferd were fortunate enough to meet a gifted Kurdish musician. He was playing near Ranoush, a Middle Eastern/Syrian restaurant. The restaurant had been damaged during the recent protests. And the Merferd and Ranoush trolley peace train picture was still covering the broken glass front doors.
As you watch him playing, the camera moves to the restaurant. Merferds are covering part of the restaurant. That part of the restaurant was damaged when protesters took to University City, Missouri a few weeks earlier.
We are honored that he'll be performing before the documentary "The Man Behind the Merferds," November 10th and 11th as the doors open at 6:00, at a place of many peoples and nations "New City South."
Paint Memphis 2017 is a free event open to the public with live music, food trucks, vendors and an all-day art show! Our paint festival is designed to highlight overlooked communities in our city and to encourage communal growth within Memphis. For the past two years, the festival has taken place at a floodwall at Chelsea and Evergreen in North Memphis with over 200 artists from across the world participating. This year the festival will take place on Saturday, September 30th under the bridge on Willett Street between Central Avenue and Lamar Avenue, as well as at Altown, the skate park located at Roland and Lamar, on the edge of Cooper-Young.
Watch the Trailer
Phil and Merferd used to once think how cool it would be to be at the front of the Paint Louis Wall. Not only did that happen today, but Phil got to paint alongside Phil Jarvis and get to know a master St Louis painter.