Well this came as a bit of a surprise and something of a treat too. On my walk in to work a couple of weeks back, I thought I’d take a small detour down Jamaica Street, and there, big as you like, was this wonderful collaboration between Bristol’s Cheba and Lebanese calligraphy artist Ghaleb Hawila.
This kind of collaboration is quite unusual in Bristol, and I am not certain I have seen any calligraphy here before, although I have seen plenty in London. Additionally, this wall is an absolute bugger to photograph because it sits in a gated courtyard and the angles are all wrong…this is the best I could do.
Cheba has painted a silhouette clutching some bright object that is sending out shards of light. The silhouetted figure is filled decorated with Cheba’s trademark cosmic space scenery, which gives it some depth.
Ghaleb Hawila said this on his Instagram feed about the collaboration:
“You gotta believe in yourself; in the lights buried within you. Give yourself the permission to glow and grow.” A collaboration with my brother @cheba_bristol his magnificent work and personality. That’s exactly one year after meeting this crazy guy in Alay, Lebanon during the @ahlafawda and @risegallery cultural exchange. I spent four days at his beautiful house, with his hyper dog and lovely wife. We explored a lot in his studio and i just can’t sum the experience with words. It was an intensive restless art residency were you get to explore yourself more and more.
It is great to get a bit of insight into how these things are achieved. A wonderwall.
We used to eat at Jamie’s Italian on Park Street reasonably often as it was a restaurant that the whole family liked. Sadly his business overstretched itself and had to close a whole ton of branches, including this one in Bristol. On the upside though, the hoarding on the outside has been beautifully decorated with a Cheba and Inkie collaboration.
This piece speaks volumes about the independent and individual culture of Bristol – that street art is sanctioned and even encouraged onto one of the most iconic shopping streets in the city and that the piece itself is bright and cheery and a bold statement of pride about the street itself. The work was sponsored by the Bristol Buisness Improvement District (BID) and was painted at the start of July.
Looking at the artwork itself, it is quite difficult to see an Inkie piece and not read the word Inkie in it. I swear I read Inkie whenever I see it. Cheba dose what Cheba does and provides a splendid cosmic backdrop for the letters. A fine collaboration and ‘in your face’ (in a nice way) piece of Bristol street art.
Some of you might be familiar with the cosmic work of Cheba, but I have never seen any of his pieces as dazzlingly colourful and ‘in your face’ as this one. This wall previously played host to another slightly unusual pink cosmic piece by Cheba, but this one completely trumps it.
You might notice from the feature image ast the top, a tiny little ceramic ‘my little pony’ which was sited there a couple of years ago by Chinagirl Tile. It is brilliant that it has survived intact. Perhaps people just don’t notice it.
The detail in this Cheba pieceshows you why he is one of the best at these stellar murals in the business – it is a bit of a niche thing, but he does it better that any of the others (in my view). Great to see something new and challenging from this Bristol artist.
Occasionally I vary my walk to work, and instead of sweeping through Stokes Croft and The Bearpit, where I am guaranteed to find some lovely new stuff, I take the hilly route and drop down St Michael’s Hill. This is not an area known for its street art, so finding this large wall by Cheba is a real find.
What a lovely way to decorate a ‘dead’ wall like this one with one of his cosmos pieces. He really has nailed this technique and is quite the best at it that I have seen. I managed to get a shot of it before completion, and it was some time before I visited it again.
I always like to see his work, it is something fresh and different.
I haven’t posted anything by Cheba for what seems a very long while, although I do know of one or two pieces he has created recently of which this is one. It would seem that he likes this particular spot which he has sprayed in the past.
Cheba is the master of cosmic murals, it is his thing and he does it so very well. It is possible to immerse yourself entirely in this piece, looking at the stars and clouds in this imaginary scene. While it might not be to everyone’s taste, this is beautifully sprayed and brings something of outer space into the centre of a busy city.
I saw this piece a day or so after I met Cheba for the first time, while on my way to the ‘paint jam’ in The Bearpit on 8 April 2017. This wall and several others on the garage on Wilder street were being prepped by Cheba and Alex from Where the Wall, who ‘curate’ many of the walls in Wilder Street.
This piece is a classic cosmos fantasy space scene that Cheba specialises in. On the one hand, and perhaps at first sight, his works look quite simple, on the other hand they are complex and detailed, and he has mastered the technique for these cosmos scenes.
What I find interesting is that not many other artists spray these kinds of scenes, and when they do, they are rarely as well executed as this. I imagine though that they might not be to everyone’s taste.
Cheba is fast growing a national profile and seems to be in demand for painting his large cosmic spacescapes all over the place. This is one of his amazing creations from back in April this year.
Nobody else does these space pictures quite as well as Cheba, he has really mastered the technique and gives us something to marvel at. This particular piece is one of my favourites, but I don’t think it lasted long before being badly tagged. I’m just pleased that I managed to snap it before it was ruined. It was painted on the People’s Republic of Stokes Croft outdoor gallery.