This week, Jared Bowen brings us the art of “Billboard Hope” in Roxbury and discusses “Saved By A Song: The Art and Healing Power of Songwriting” by Nashville singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier. Plus, a review of the documentary “The Lost Leonardo.”

“Billboard Hope,” a billboard in Roxbury’s John Eliot Square featuring local artists

An advertising billboard at the corner of Centre and Roxbury Streets has become a canvas for artistic inspiration. “Billboard Hope” is a project conceived by Roxbury resident and artist Dayenne Walters. Inspired by the murals she saw growing up in the Grove Hall area, she reached into her own pockets to lease a dilapidated billboard and transform it into a place for local artists to spread joy. Walters began curating the billboard in March and has featured a rotating exhibition of work from local artists including Hakim Raquib, Ngoc-Tran Vu, and Chanel Thurvil. The current mural on view is “Majestic” by Boston-based artist Ekua Holmes.

“Billboards are everywhere, but what they’re selling us, are they really things that we need?” asks Walters. “I’m thinking, why not disrupt that narrative and say, ‘Buy joy, buy hope, buy beauty.’”

“Saved By a Song: The Art and Healing Power of Songwriting,” a memoir by Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier, in stores now


Nashville-based singer, songwriter and author Mary Gauthier has published a new and deeply personal memoir about her songwriting process. “Saved by a Song: The Art and Healing Power of Songwriting” is raw account of the award-winning musician’s battles with addiction, co-dependency and a traumatic childhood. Her quest to transform that pain has resulted in a career in songwriting.

“Witnessing your story, having written it, gives you agency,” says Gauthier. “When you become the songwriter… you're no longer a voiceless victim, you have authority over how this story ends.”

“The Lost Leonardo,” in select theaters now

Fine art lovers might remember a painting attributed to Leonardo da Vinci which sold for a record-breaking $450 million dollars in 2017. But the historic sale of “Salvator Mundi” was also shrouded in doubt — with questions about its authenticity, provenance and who drove the record auction sale. Director Andreas Koefoed back the layers of vested interests from some of the world’s most influential figures.

“A film that reveals just how shockingly inglorious the art world can be, The Lost Leonardo plays like a captivating thriller right down to the whodunnit — as in, did Leonardo really create a painting that set the fine art world ablaze?”

What places in your neighborhood could be transformed into a space for art? Tell Jared about it on Facebook or Twitter!