On noticing that the statue of Queen Victoria on the edge of College Green in Bristol has been cleaned up, but the dirt that gave the statue details some relief, has gone and she now resembles a ghost. Happy Halloween.
Yet another new wall for 2018, and how well it has been utilised by Dinho Bento. I guess this wall could have been split into two or three slots, but what a great decision to keep its integrity.
Dinho Bento is a Brazilian artist whose work seems to draw inspiration from the natural world. A quick glance at his Facebook feed tells you that he is interested in portraying the interconnectedness of humanity with our environment, and the organic green strands in this piece are a representation of that connection – or at least, that is my interpretation.
I can’t necessarily put my finger on it, but artists from different countries definitely have national styles, or perhaps continental styles, and this piece really screams out South America. I guess the more art you see, the more you recognise this phenomenon, and while it is not true of all artists, it is a real thing.
The natural world themes and story of this piece really chime for me. It is called ‘Listen to Nature’ – something I have done all my life. Great work Dinho Bento.
Although this extraordinary piece is signed by Caro Pepe, I think she had some support from her frequent painting partner Age Age. This wall was another one themed with Bristol Women’s Voice (along with the Nomad Clan Lisa Simpson). Commemorating one hundred years of the Women’s vote.
I really like these rather surreal pieces that Caro Pepe is producing at the moment, with the cut-away pieces of head exposing thoughts, emotions and ideas – very powerful stuff and a further dimension to the covered eye that distinguishes her work.
So, another great wall and another great artist at Upfest 2018 – I think this is another one that makes it into my top 10.
Well this is an absolute stunner, make no mistake. A few days in the making, and the scaffolding hiding the true genius of both the piece and subject, this must be one of the highlights of Upfest 2018.
It is a strange thing as a writer and observer of street art, that I am really only familiar with Bristol street artists or artists who frequently visit Bristol. I really don’t know very much about the world circuit of famous artists that travel the globe for festivals and commissions – this leaves me looking a bit daft when writing up pieces like this one because I simply don’t know the artist Arcy at all.
One thing is for sure though I will certainly be looking out for his stuff on the Interweb from now on, as this is such an outstanding work by a truly gifted artist. His website is well worth a look, and his biography is here. Also check out his gallery of walls…this guy is good.
Of course, the picture is of one of the greatest and most influential people of our time, Stephen Hawking, who sadly died in March this year aged 76. I think that this piece really captures the spirit of Stephen Hawking brilliantly, the bright and slightly cheeky personality. This is photorealistic art at its best. Bravo!
Smak has really been smashing it lately with some magnificent writing all over Bristol. His colour combinations, lettering and feature details are just getting better and better. This is a fine recent piece from the M32 Roundabout.
I love the colour progression from left to right, and the letters while slightly disguised are clearly legible. It is the temple facade in the middle of the piece that really lifts it up to another level and columns and stone too. This is a great piece.
The words were scrawled up on a wall of The Bearpit, walls which Bristol City Council keep on painting only to be tagged moments later. The City Council in their zeal to tidy up The Bearpit (for whatever reason) are not bringing people with them. Their ‘ban it’ mentality is leading to a degradation of a space that only two years ago was vibrant, colourful and tidy. In trying to tackle problems such as addiction and violence and homelessness and graffiti and skateboarding, the clampdown is using the ‘clean up’ of The Bearpit as a deflection of its own failings and those of the Government in these years of austerity, and is wrongly conflating these issues.
Homeless people are not necessarily addicts. Addicts are not necessarily graffiti artists. Graffiti artists are not necessarily skateboarders. Skateboarders are not necessarily violent. Violence is not necessarily practiced by homeless people. And so on…
I have always had a massive soft spot for Mr Klue’s work – I love to examine it and unravel all the different abstract elements that combine to such great effect. As is always the case in this tunnel, the lighting has played havoc with the true colours of the piece, but the form is there for all to see.
After what feels like a bit of a lull in his work, it appears that he is becoming a little more active on the streets, which is a good thing. I first became aware of his work in the Stokes Croft area of Bristol, but it is telling that the decline in decent walls there and the Council’s stance on The Bearpit has driven artists like Mr Klue away (I am guessing). This is a fine piece indeed.
Well this was a nice surprise. You don’t get to see much of this kind of street art in Bristol, so it is great when visiting artists come and switch it up a bit.
As an aside, the expression ‘switch it up’ is new to me…in all my life I had never heard it until my fourteen year old daughter said it a few weeks ago and I told her it wasn’t a phrase. She just laughed at me. I had to go and look it up. Of course since then I have heard it quite a lot, and now am using it for the first time ever in writing. You saw it here first folks.
Jordan Lauder, A.K.A. Spray Saint is from Hemel Hempstead and has an awesome story to tell. I am not a follower of any faith, but I do believe in goodness and people having the chance to turn their lives around, and for Spray Saint finding God has helped him to find some peace. I really recommend that you take a look at a video he made about his journey.
His leopard piece in St Werburghs tunnel is beautifully worked in blue tones and has a real sense of movement about it. As I said at the start, we just don’t get to see much work like this in Bristol and I really hope he comes to visit again, and wish him well on his continuing journey.
In the past when I have posted work by Ments, I usually describe it as being ‘organic’ in nature, with lots of swirls and unusual shapes making up the letters of his name. In this piece however, we see something quite different. What is interesting about this is that If he had used different letters for this piece, I would not have been able to identify the artist. Conversely, if he changed the letters on his regular style, I would still be able to identify the work from the shapes, tones and colours used.
This particular piece is easy on the eye and shows us a different side to the talents of the artist. I will be interested to see if he does more of this kind of work in future.