Aah, pigs swimming, but not any ordinary pigs, it looks like these might be related in some way to the uniformed kind. I absolutely love this rather surreal mural from Peter Sheridan at the Cheltenham Paint Festival 2019. It is an outrageous piece beautifuly painted.
Peter Sheridan painted one of my favourite pieces of Upfest 2018 and he has carried on his brilliant work in Cheltenham. It took a while to find this piece but it was well worth the endeavour. It is not only the bizarre and humorous story of the piece, but the execution is quite exquisite.
Any piece with water is always going to be a challenge, but it is one that the artist has risen to and mastered. There are two other pieces that instantly come to mind when I see this and they are; the Odeith crocodile at Upfest 2018 and the figure in water by Cosmo Sarson at Upfest 2016:
I love the work of I Bee W, but feel a bit guilty that I haven’t posted much of his work – there is no reason for this, I just have a few pieces in my archive that never made it out. This poignant piece from the Cheltenham Paint Festival 2019 was always going to get posted as the subject matter chimes with me.
There is a high-gloss quality about this piece, which is remarkable really as it has been sprayed onto chipboard. The image is a sad tale of the disappearance of wildlife through biodoversity loss and climate change, the two most significant issues facing the planet. A little red-eyed tree frog – a representative of life on earth – is saying ‘Bye then!’ as if its existence is a trivial afterthought. Although quite funny, I find this piece and all it represents very depressing. I never thought I would witness first-hand the tipping point, where slowing or reversing biodiversity loss becomes impossible, but all I see around me is an acceleration towards that eventuality. Big changes are needed urgently if we want a beautiful future.
One of the rather comforting things about the Cheltenham Paint Festival was the number of familiar Bristol-based artists who had been invited to paint, including the wonderful Mr Draws who is no stranger to Natural Adventures.
This imaginative piece combines a toothpaste tube with mountains… who’d have thought? When I first started photographing pieces by Mr Draws, a great many of them featured mountains, so it was nice to see this retrospective piece in Cheltenham. I have previously published a gallery of his work which you can see here.
I have only once before come across the work of Buber Nebz and that was a fabulous dog piece that he painted at Upfest 2016. That dog and this fine painting of a woman listening to music could hardly be more different and demonstrates that the artist is most versatile and constantly evolving his style. On his website biography he stated that his recent works contain pixels, something he is playing with at the moment and that can be seen in the hair of this woman.
I think that this piece has an oblique reference to the book theme of the festival, by mentioning words in the context of music with the slogan ‘where words fail, music speaks’. I’m not sure if this is Buber Nebz’ quote or he is quoting someone else, but it seems to work well here. This is a nice clean piece with a great colour palette – a great contribution to the festival.
Consistently creative, hugely talented and generally just brilliant, Chinagirl Tile keeps on turning out the most incredible ceramic installation pieces time and time again. This clever combination piece for the Cheltenham Paint Festival 2019 features a ceramic tile girl spray painting a child-like horse with blue spots. I was lucky enough to catch up with Chinagirl Tile when she was putting this piece together – it was all a little tense as she was running low on the bonding material for glueing the tiles to the wall. While we chatted I managed to sneak a picture of her plan for the piece, and I have to say it all turned out pretty much as she had imagined it.
I think that Chinagirl Tile is unique amongst street artists in that I don’t know of any others who make such elaborate and artistic original tiles of this type. There are many installation artists, but none who do anything like this.
The girl is made up of about fifteen or more separate tiles, each perfectly crafted, glazed and fired and pieced together seamlessly. It is a painstaking process but one that yeilds such fabulous results. And… you’ve got to love that monkey on her shoulder.
At festivals, Chinagirl Tile consistently remains one of my favourite artists and any town anywhere in the world would be uplifted by one of her beautiful tile installations. The best part is that they tend to remain intact for several years, for people to enjoy.
When they (whoever they are) created Irony, they certainly bundled up an enormous amount of talent into one person. This magnificent portrait piece was painted by Irony for the Cheltenham Paint Festival in 2018, but luckily for everyone who lives in or visits the town, it is still there for all to see.
I had seen this piece many times on Instagram, but to see it ‘in the flesh; is another experience altogether. It is breathtaking. I don’t know the backstory to this piece, if even there is one, but it really is special.
It is a pity that we don’t get to see much of Irony’s work here in the West of England, but I guess we have Upfest and the Cheltenham Paint Festival to lure him out of London from time to time.
Taking coals to Newcastle. Bristol-based Decay originally hails from Cheltenham, so painting at the Cheltenham Paint Festival must feel rather like a homecoming each time he does it. This magnificent piece from the 2018 festival can be dated from its design, which has been superseded by his written word ‘Decay’ for the last year or so.
As I said in the last post featuring Inkie, Cheltenham’s large walls retain pieces from previous years, so visitors can benefit not only from the current festival, but from all of them. The only snag is that organiser Dice67 has to keep finding more walls every year. Painting the entire town.