Even though Aspire no longer lives in Bristol, I have managed to come across some of his work this year, which is a joyful thing. Of all the artists that have left Bristol in recent years, I miss his work (and that of Kleiner Shames) the most. Thank goodness for festivals such as Upfest and the Cheltenham Paint Festival, which have encouraged Aspire to leave London and share his work in the provinces.
This piece is an absolute belter, with a beautiful Robin, set alongside some silver birch trees and weirdly a bottle of sun spray. I’m not quite sure I get the significance of the plastic bottle, but it certainly sets up an interesting juxtaposition in the piece. As always the whole thing is superbly crafted, and Aspire’s pixelated sections perform the job of a signature. Top work from Aspire.
It looks like Aspire made great use of his time in Bristol for Upfest, and left behind this little extra piece in Devon Road, a spot he has painted in before when he lived in the city. I will never tire of Aspire’s beautiful birds and pixelated aberrations, and still feel sad that he left Bristol for London a few years ago.
Although he has painted dozens of different species of bird, he seems to return blue tits most frequently. The bird is stunning, and the incorporation of the street sign inspirational. I don’t have the writing skills to express how much I like Aspire’s work, suffice it to say I think it is awesome.
One of Bristol’s biggest losses (in street art terms) in recent years was the departure of Aspire, who took up residence in the old smoke, making the opposite decision to the one I made many years ago. I definitely know where I’d rather live, and it is not in London. On the upside, Aspire does come to visit Bristol from time to time, and he always seems to dazzle us during Upfest.
Aspire specialises in creating the most beautiful pictures of birds and in this Upfest piece he has perfectly captured my favourite British bird, the Goldfinch. His work is never complete without his trademark pixelation, and it is interesting to see from this work in progress, that he adds the pixels at the end of the painting process.
I love this piece, it feels very uncluttered, and the neutral skyline background serves to lift the goldfinch out from the boards. If you are interested in seeing more of Aspire’s work, I recommend you take a little look at a gallery I compiled in 2018, and updated today.
I leave you with three Haiku poems I wrote about goldfinches:
Another fine piece that has been in The Natural Adventures ‘departure lounge’ for an eternity is this lovely bird by Aspire, reminding us of what we have missed since he moved to London a few years back.
Painted as part of a paint jam, you will notice a Kid Crayon character just to the right… what heady days those were. Pieces would stay intact for much longer back then. These days if you snooze you lose. I have had trouble identifying the blue and white bird, which troubles me as I consider myself quite good at identifying wildlife. It is beautifully painted with Aspire’s signature pixelated boxes. It was a sad day indeed, when he left Bristol.
How utterly perfect to welcome Aspire back to Bristol for Upfest’s 75 walls in 75 days, and what an amazing huge mural he has gifted the fine people of Bedminster. I have to admit that this piece came as a bit of a surprise as he seemed to have painted it quite quickly between visits, or maybe I just didn’t stop to look the right way at the right time.
I thought I was going to get a bit frustrated with the parking situation, but the gentleman in the black van was very obliging and moved out of the way for me to take a picture, and just to prove it, here he is giving me the thumbs up. If you don’t ask, you don’t get. The upshot was I managed to get a full and uninterrupted photograph of the wall.
The mural itself is awesome, and takes Aspire into the next level. I am not sure how many large murals he has done since moving to London from Bristol, but this is definitely the biggest I have seen.
The focus of the piece is a stunning Kingfisher, with a cherry on the top, and a little bit of pixelation, for which Aspire is famed. However, Aspire has combined the bird with a classical study of a bowl of fruit and the combination makes for a very special and intoxicating mural. This is glorious stuff and reminds us of what we have been missing in Bristol (as if we didn’t already know) since Aspire left. Bravo!
Photographing street art is a bit of an artifact of my desire to explore and innate curiosity. Last weekend I went to the recycling centre – we continnue to clear out our home, but like a plate of spaghetti, the residual never seems to diminish. I decided o take a different route out and was rewarded with a few walls on Alfred Street that I have never been aware of. The pieces there are not new, but are utterly splendid.
Front and centre is this magnificent (citron crested?) cocatoo by Aspire. I can honestly say that I think it is the best piece I have seen from this artist, maybe ever. There is something about the composition, its weirdness, toadstools and alien spaceships and this unphased cocatoo, that simply blows me away. Aspire moving to London was a real pity for us in Bristol, but what a treat to be able still to find ‘new’ work by him. More to come from this hidden spot.
This is the kind of fantastic work that we are missing ever since Aspire left Bristol for London. How lucky we are that he returned to us for Upfest 2018 and painted this new wall with these magnificent puffins.
Aspire specialises in painting birds and he seems to be improving with every new piece he creates, it is just a pity that I don’t get to see much of his work ‘in the flesh’ any more, and have to rely on Instagram for my fix.
This particular piece is quite unusual for two main reasons. Firstly I can’t recall seeing any sea birds from Aspire before and secondly there are lots of birds in the one scene, where more commonly he will paint only one. Love this piece.
It may be an old piece, but that in no way detracts from its class and beauty. Aspire left Bristol about two years ago, and this piece dates back to some time before then I suspect. My recent discovery of St Mark’s Avenue has been a bit of an archeological expedition, digging out perfectly preserved specimens from another age.
Aspire specialises in birds, and I think in particular has a thing for Blue Tits – this is one of at least four that I have posted in his gallery. It is such a pity that he is only an occasional visitor to Bristol, his pieces were really rather special. Our loss is London’s gain.
This is a really unusual piece by Aspire in a rather unusual setting. The nomadic community garden just off Brick Lane is an example of extreme Bohemian living. A collection of allotment huts, some of which are mini cafes, and a few small plots surrounded by graffiti and street art. It is a completely bonkers public space that has to be seen to be understood.
I would normally associate birds and other wildlife with Aspire, so this rather ghoulish portrayal of Mother Teresa came as a bit of a surprise package. It is definitely by Aspire as it is signed with his characteristic signature in the colours used for the piece. My sister didn’t like this, and I tried to explain to her that it was not typical of his work. Personally I like to see artists switch it up from time to time. A fine piece.