Larry Bird mural artist agrees to remove most of the tattoos from bizarre painting

Larry Bird
A mural of basketball legend Larry Bird is seen on the side of a multi-family residence Aug. 21 in Indianapolis. Larry Bird is said to like the mural but not the tattoos.
(Darron Cummings / Associated Press)

Larry Bird was not pleased with a mural of him that recently popped up on a multifamily residence in the Indianapolis neighborhood of Fountain Square — so much so that his attorney contacted the artist about making some changes.

Can’t imagine what the basketball legend was so upset about. It’s only an image of Bird in his Indiana State uniform, just like we remember him.

Well, except for the red cardinal tattoo on his left cheek.

And the tattoo of the bunnies humping on his right forearm.

And the ones of the spider web on his left shoulder, a basketball on his right palm and a heart featuring the words “Muck Rock” on his right bicep.


And the words “Hoosier” around his neckline and “Indiana” on his left forearm.

And all the other tattoos artist Jules Muck splashed all over the image of Bird, who is ink-free in real life.

Attorney Gary Sallee spoke with Muck about her mural featuring his client.

“Larry’s position is he has elevated himself from where he began to where he is now through a lot of hard work. He has developed a brand that is marketable and he needs to protect that brand,” Sallee told IndyStar. “The mural, as originally painted, was a departure from that brand.”

Sallee added: “He just doesn’t want to be seen as a tattooed guy.”

Muck understood.

“This is another human being that is obviously not liking it,” she told IndyStar on Wednesday morning. “If he was happy and thought it was funny, that’s a different story.”

The two sides came to an agreement, Muck said. She would remove all the tattoos except for the “Indiana” one on his arm and will move her “Muck Rock” tag to somewhere else on the mural.

“Larry deserves some sort of prestigious mural,” she said of the Hall of Famer whose jersey has been retired by Indiana State and the Boston Celtics. “That’s not my calling. That’s not what I’m here to do. I just wanted to have a little fun.”