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VIDEO: Go to the Tabernacle for the food, stay for the art

A+glimpse+inside+the+art-covered+walls+of+the+Tabernacle.
A glimpse inside the art-covered walls of the Tabernacle.

A glimpse inside the art-covered walls of the Tabernacle.

Francesca Bond / The Record

Francesca Bond / The Record

A glimpse inside the art-covered walls of the Tabernacle.

Francesca Bond, Executive Editor

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The Tabernacle may be a restaurant but it feels like an impromptu art gallery.

Buffalo’s west side just got a new hang out spot. The Tabernacle, a bar-restaurant conjoined with popular cafe Sweetness 7, is opening on Grant Street. Its building used to be an old church, hence the name, with religious touches to hint at it, including Sistine Chapel-like paintings. 

The place is covered in artwork, all painted by Jeremy Twiss, an artist who’d never painted before in his life, until now.

“As he rolled paint he called me at night and said he said I had an idea: ‘ Can I paint? ‘And I said ‘yeah go for it.’ ‘Well what if it looks like crap?’ And I said ‘Well it’s paint, we’ll just paint over it,” said Prish Moran, owner of The Tabernacle and Sweetness 7.

Moran did not need to paint over it.

The paintings are hard to ignore. Unique, colorful artwork, some featuring nudity, covers every inch of wall and ceiling in the place. Twiss was a cook for Moran at Sweetness 7 but was getting burned out. Moran knew he needed a change of scenery so she enlisted him to help her paint the place and get it ready.

“I didn’t know what to say I started laughing. I actually started crying. The first thing I said was ‘There are breasts on my ceiling!’ And he said ‘You told me I could do what I wanted’ and I said “Go, go for it,” Moran said, laughing.

Moran, a mom and former art teacher, had no idea it would look like this. Twiss doodled here and there, but she never knew he had the chops to do this. She now compares him to Michelangelo.

Julianna Tutrone will be managing the Tabernacle and marvels at its uniqueness.

“I just moved here so I’m not sure how many bars in the area are like this, but I assume not many,” Tutrone said.

The Tabernacle’s menu will be small for both food and drinks. There will be a couple of fine liquors, a few choices of beer and a couple different wines to choose from along with some menu items.

Moran wants it to be simple. She plans to bring the community together through music. Much of the seating is communal, encouraging people to sit by strangers and strike up a conversation.

Reporting/editing: Francesca Bond

Videography: Olimpcia Desamour

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VIDEO: Go to the Tabernacle for the food, stay for the art