1363. Upfest 2017 (142)

This was most certainly one of the highlights of my Upfest experience last year even before I knew that it was by an artist whose work I admire greatly, Braga Last 1.

Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

I saw this piece early in its genesis on one of my first circuits around South Street Park, but inspite of Braga being scrawled all over it, the penny hadn’t dropped. It wasn’t until the end of the second day that I was able to see the finished piece and grab a few moments chatting with Braga Last 1, or at least I should say with his girlfriend as he struggled a litle with English.

Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

The piece is a self-portrait with a crazy bag of stuff in a back pack…but where is he off to? If you take a closer look, this is actually a Brexit piece – there are some clues in the bag.

Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

If you look carefully, you can see that in the rucksack is a book ‘Brexit for Dummies’ a brilliant title. What saddens me is that Europeans view our departure as utter folly, and I can’t help agreeing with them. I feel embarrassed and ashamed that our nation voted to leave and I am left feeling closer to the Europeans than to my own countryfolk. I fear an unhealthy legacy for many decades to come.

Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Braga Last1, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
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