15 Salem St.

Smile on Salem St.

Great change came to Salem Street twice in the 20th Century. In the 1910s, what was once a smattering of residences, offices, and stables fell to make way for a great parking garage just as the number of automobile owners was taking off across the country. A home for fallen girls was among those razed to make room for Ford’s Model Ts. Then in the 1960s, the other side of Salem Street was cleared to make way for a new Worcester Public Library. Now, the expansive parking garage has given way to the Grid’s Portland Street Lofts.

Greg Mike’s mural at 15 Salem Street comes with layers of meaning. The Smiley face pays homage to Worcesterite Harvey Ball’s iconic design, while the tiger is a symbol of the passion and energy of people. The Tom Cat alludes to youth and, in Greg Mike’s words: “staying gold.” The Owl symbolizes wisdom, vision, and creativity. Greg Mike’s iconic LoudMouf characters at the bottom remind folks to speak their minds and open their mouths.