10 Instagram-Worthy Hot Spots in Springfield

November 03, 2020SHARE Share

If you’re craving a city with lots of public art, you’ve come to the right place. From massive sculptures to spectacular murals, Springfield has easily accessible art all across the city. No matter what side of town you’re on, you’re only moments away from your nearest readymade Instagram backdrop. 

Looking for some awesome original art pieces? Check out our (non-comprehensive) list! 

1. The Cloud House 

Location: Farmers Park 

Renowned artist Matthew Mazzotta was in the midst of an artist residency when the idea for Cloud House came to him. The wooden barn structure pays homage to the water cycle: when it rains, water collects in the cloud. Then, when visitors rock in the rocking chairs inside the barn, the rain falls from the cloud onto the tin roof and down to plants in the Cloud House’s window boxes. Bonus: it’s right by Farmers Market of the Ozarks, so you can hop right by on Saturday after picking up your fresh local produce! 

2. The World’s Largest Fork 

Location: Chesterfield Village 

Well, “world’s largest” is actually up for debate (there may be a larger one in Colorado), but the fork is still pretty impressive. The fork started its life in front of a restaurant in Springfield and was later relocated to Chesterfield Village, outside the offices of food service ad agency Noble & Associates. Today, digital agency Classy Llama occupies the space, and though they aren’t doing food-related work, the fork has become too iconic to move. Composed of stainless steel, the fork is a whopping 11 tons. Stop by, marvel at its size and be sure to grab a selfie! 

3. The Sun Target II 

Location: Outside the Springfield Art Museum 

Known around town as the French Fries statue, the Sun Target II had homes in Chicago, NYC and Atlanta before finding its way to Springfield. Its creator, John Henry, finds his passion in structuring sculptures of all sizes with an emphasis in minimal and abstract geographic space. It’s the perfect way to welcome you into the museum—just a reminder of all the amazing artwork you’re about to experience. 

4. The Tumbler 

Location: Park Central Square

It’s impossible to miss this massive sculpture on a trip downtown. Take a step outside of The Coffee Ethic and you’ll find The Tumbler in all of its abstract glory. The Tumbler was first placed on the square in 1971, and it’s served as a centerpiece to the Center City ever since. In recent years, it was discovered that the piece is intended to be turned every year, giving a new perspective to those viewing it. 

5. Sculpture Walk 

Location: Downtown Springfield 

The Sculpture Walk prides itself on being a “museum without walls,” bringing art to all. Each year, artists display sculptures around downtown made of a variety of media. In 2019-20, sculptures ranged from steel creations of the unofficial Springfield flag to stucco conversation hearts. Whether you’re taking the family out for a nice summer day or enjoying a date night downtown, the Sculpture Walk is the perfect crowd pleaser and made for social media.

6. The Do Good Mural 

Location: Commercial Street

Having murals as a destination is the hot new thing for cities—just look at cities like Nashville or Kansas City with their famed murals. When you’re on C Street, the Do Good mural is that destination. Right outside of the Vecino Group offices, there’s plenty of space to grab your friends and pose for a photo op that’s sure to cause Instagram envy. 

7. The Butterfly Wings 

Location: Downtown Springfield

Spread your wings at this noteworthy mural in the heart of downtown. Similar to some of the wing murals you’ve seen across the country, we take a Springfield spin on it with our butterfly wings. Local artist Andrea Ehrhardt came up with the idea to launch #417StreetArt with this mural, starting a movement that has rippled throughout the Queen City. 

8. Welcome to Springfield 

Location: Downtown Springfield 

Painted on a brick wall outside of the Discovery Center, the Welcome to Springfield mural looks like something off a vintage postcard. This mural is another piece by Ehrhardt, commissioned to help foster a greater sense of artistic community and to welcome visitors. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, it’s another good photo op for you and your crew.

9. The Lego Tower 

Location: Downtown Springfield

This brightly colored street art can be found creeping up the north wall of downtown’s oldest fitness center, the Ward YMCA. In March 2020, Ehrhardt used a lift to paint the multistory mural on the building’s brick exterior. Atop the tower of Lego bricks stands a little girl proudly hoisting the Springfield flag—a sight that’s sure to catch your eye if you’re strolling south on Jefferson.

10. The Kinetic Man 

Location: Downtown Springfield 

Standing tall in downtown’s Jordan Valley Park, the Kinetic Man—or K-Man—is a shiny beacon on a sunny Springfield day. Originally created by local sculptor Russ RuBert for the Walt Disney Children’s Festival, this lanky character’s limbs sway in the wind and can even be controlled with a crank and gears at the base. Trust us: K-Man is krazy kewl!

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