Join us at the New Orleans Jazz Museum on Friday, May 11 from 6pm to 8pm for the grand unveiling of the Xavier Gonzalez Mural, which hung for many years in Dixie's Bar of Music.
This evening of music and celebration will feature the Corey Walter Trio, refreshments from local restaurants, and a cash bar.
Free and open to the public.
About the Xavier Gonzales Mural and Dixie's Bar of Music:
Dixie’s Bar of Music opened in a very narrow building at 204 St. Charles Avenue on October 19, 1939. The owners were Yvonne “Dixie” Fasnacht and her sister, Irma. Dixie played clarinet, Dorothy “Sloopy” Sloop played piano, Johnny Senac played bass, and Judy Ertle played trumpet. It became a hang-out for entertainers, politicians, and World War II servicemen. In late 1949, the operation was moved to 701 Bourbon Street on the corner of St. Peter Street. Musicians from the radio program “Dawnbusters” frequently performed there. Dixie’s Bar of Music also became a safe place for gay men and women to congregate in New Orleans. Miss Dixie was known to be very protective of her gay clientele and welcomed them openly at a time when harassment and discrimination were still common. Dixie’s remained a popular spot until it closed in the mid-1960s. Dixie died in 2011 at age 101.
The 35-foot-wide mural was done by artist Xavier Gonzalez and interior designer Charlie Gresham in the late 1940s. It features dozens of images of prominent national and local musicians and entertainers. Xavier Gonzalez studied with Pablo Picasso in Paris during the 1920s. He later became an important figure in the New York City art world. He died in 1993 at age 94. Dixie and Irma Fasnacht donated the painting to the Louisiana State Museum in 1978.
The display will be complemented by Dixie’s clarinet and a variety of artifacts from the Fasnacht family.
The mural was recently restored thanks to a generous donation from Nuria Rowley.