Cellpic Sunday – Bob Dylan Is Back In Fargo

Bob Dylan is 3 stories tall.

Fargo, North Dakota.

The building in the photo above is a landmark in downtown Fargo. Formerly the Viking Hotel, the building is now storefronts and the Bison Apartments. Bob Dylan, born in Duluth, Minnesota in 1941 is known for his residence in the state of 10,000 lakes. In 1959, Dylan, then still using his birth name, Robert Zimmerman, or actually by his then nickname, Zimmy, spent about a year in Fargo. He met a friend who lived in Fargo at summer camp and decided to stay in Fargo, living and working, and playing music.

He met another Fargo musician then, Bobby Velline. That Bobby was thrust into stardom on the day the music died. His act went onstage in place of Richie Valens, The Big Bopper, and Buddy Holly when their plane crashed on takeoff attempting to get to their next gig in Moorhead, Minnesota just across the river from Fargo. You can read more about Dylan’s time in Fargo, the people he met, and the places he worked in the article here.

Dylan played with Bobby Vee’s group, “The Shadows” for a time. They played the Crystal Ballroom in Fargo. Another prominent musician has a mural on the wall that used to be part of the Ballroom. Here‘s a link to that post featuring a famous jazz musician and his one and only performance in Fargo, a performance that won a grammy.

In June, 2022, the new owner of the Bison Apartments and the skate shop there, Angie Granheim, commissioned Los Angeles graffiti artist Jules Muck to create a mural featuring Dylan as he might have looked in 1959 (except for the 3-stories tall part, anyway.) The black and white painting depicts a younger Dylan as if he’s leaning against the wall, his hands folded over a newspaper and smoking a cigarette.

About the photo: Captured on my Samsung S20U, I had trouble deciding on the composition. The sun was in the right spot for capturing the mural in full light, but with it being painted on the south wall of the west-facing Bison Apartment building, I couldn’t compose the image in an ideal fashion at least as I saw it in my mind. In any case, after downloading it from my phone, I processed it in Adobe Lightroom and Luminar Neo. You can view the image in 2K HD on my Flickr site here. I am including this post as part of the #PPAC (Photographing Public Art Challenge).

I encourage fellow bloggers to create their own Cellpic Sunday posts. I never have a specific topic for this feature, and the only rules are that the photo must be captured with a cell phone, iPad, or another mobile device… If you have an image from a drone or even a dash cam, that’s acceptable as well. The second rule is to link your challenge response to this post or leave a comment here with a link to your post in the comment.

John Steiner


    • Thanks! I have an ulterior motive for using Flickr. It’s an online backup for my photos, both private and public. Reasonably priced for the amount of storage you get, and it’s a great display medium for sharing the ones you want to share.

  1. I love the poster, Bob Dylan, and the story you told. What a horrible way to enter the world of music – after it died. I loved that song and at the time never even knew it was about the musicians that died. My Cell Pic is coming on Wednesday. 🙂 See you then. 🙂

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