2578. Cheltenham 2019 (23)

Kedals is an artist whose work I have come across a couple of times in Bristol but only in the format of wheatpastes, so it was something of a surprise and indeed a great pleasure to see this painted wall in the Honeybourne Line tunnel at this year’s Cheltenham Paint Festival.

Kedals, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Kedals, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

What is amazing is that the style he has adopted here is exactly the same as the one he presents on his wheatpastes. Pulling together elements from the great cartoon/comic genre Kedals has kind of stuck to the brief for the Festival theme which was to incorporate books in some way – Kedals has written  ‘comics are books too’ by way of explanation.

Kedals, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Kedals, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

I’m not sure what story the piece is trying to tell, but Kedals has cleverly incorporated the word ‘Knowledge’ across the top of the piece. I don’t know either, who the two faces belong to (they look like the Krays to me), but typical of his style, he has painted them twice as freehand duplicates, which is what he does with his wheatpastes. All in all I was really pleased to see this fine piece.

2577. Cheltenham 2019 (22)

Nol is a big personality who paints big personalities. His cartoon characters are always beautifully sprayed with crisp and clean lines and so full of charm (even the monsters). His fills are so solid, never anything coming through underneath, no cheating on the paint from Nol.

Nol, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Nol, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

I have met Nol on a couple of occasions and he is a hunter with Street Art Cities, like me. I think he is a bit of a festival-goer, because I have only ever seen his work at festivals and don’t recall seeing anything randomly placed in Bristol, although he is from Holland, so I guess festivals are his way of putting himself about a bit. I like the message on this one ‘Be excellent to each other’. Always cool cartoon pieces perfectly turned-out.

2576. Cheltenham 2019 (21)

Anyone who made their way into Cheltenham for the Paint Festival from the station along the Honeybourne Line would have seen this utterly striking piece by Fink. Three stylised faces in bright and beautiful colours on a brick wall between the two tunnels. If you look carefully you will see that within each of the faces, there is a background of countless more faces. Fink creates these faces in one single spray movement.

Fink, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, Bristol, September 2019
Fink, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, Bristol, September 2019

I don’t know too much about Fink other than that at one time he used to spray little characters in Bristol and I assume he used to live here. I have seen on his Instagram account that he is currently working in Dubai, so I guess his visit to Cheltenham was combined with a trip home. A great opener for the festival.

2575. Cheltenham 2019 (20)

I have come across RTC a couple of times at Upfest in Bristol and really like his stencil work. This piece featuring Stephen Hawking reinforces my admiration. Many regular readers will know that I consider multi-layered stencils to be a highly skilled art form, and one that is probably misunderstood in terms of the hard work that goes into a piece like this one.

RTC, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
RTC, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

I believe RTC is a local Cheltenham artist, so it must be especially pleasing for him to be able to do a piece at the festival. I am guessing that RTC is referencing one of several books by Stephen Hawking in this piece, and most likely ‘a Brief History of Time. This is a truly excellent stencil piece.

2564. Cheltenham 2019 (19)

You just know when you are looking at a really special piece, and this chihuahua howling in the moon by Irony is an absolute blinder from this year’s Cheltenham Paint Festival.

Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

Thankfully I decided to visit the festival on the Friday and the Sunday and so managed to catch Irony while he was putting the finishing touches to the piece. At least this time I knew who he was, having seen him paint his extraordinary ‘self-portrait’ piece in Bristol earlier this year.

Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

When I first saw the mural I thaought it was a wolf, but it just didn’t look right, and I know that Irony is far too good an artist to have muffed it. I knew it was a dog, but I didn’t know what kind until I saw Irony’s Instagram feed.

Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

Before enjoting the rest of the pictures of this masterpiece I feel I should explain why the pictures feel so squeezed and the angles are all wrong. Of course, the row end wall faces onto a narrow back lane and so it is virtually impossible to get a long shot of the piece. The best view would be from a garden opposite (on a ladder or something like that).

Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

The moon is superb and almost feels like it is emmitting light. Without doubt a major triumph of the Cheltenham Paint Festival 2019.

Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Irony, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

 

 

 

 

2552. Cheltenham 2019 (18)

Being so close to Bristol, the Cheltenham Paint Festival is crowded with artists that I am really familiar with, who make the short journey up the M5 or on the train. This is a lovely piece called ‘I Hear You’ by Stephen Quick which according to his Twitter feed is a call to arms to all the unheard voices now being heard.

Stephen Quick, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
Stephen Quick, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

Stephen Quick’s pieces historically used to be complex stencils, but more recently he has taken to painting freehand in a stencil style. He uses a brilliant mash-up approach to his work combining film or TV elements and to illustrate this here are his #hashtags for this piece on social media:

Streetart, urbanart, portrait, power, woman, superhero, shera, teenagemutantninjaturtles, mural, cheltenhampaintfestival, cheltenham, painting, art, artofinstagram, spraypaint, acrylicpainting, stencilart.

A really fine piece. Bravo.

2551. Cheltenham 2019 (17)

A beautiful and understated little stencil piece by M-one that for me pretty much stole the show at the Cheltenham Paint Festival this year. I haven’t come across the artist before but I believe he lives in Southsea.

M-One, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019
M-One, Paint Festival 2019, Cheltenham, September 2019

What is so clever about this stencil is not only the placement and the illusion that the hole is a real one, but that the rust colour he has used kind of blends in with the rusty drips on the tiles behind. I’m not sure if this was his only piece at the festival or if there is another one somewhere in my archive. I’ll find out soon enough. Brilliant piece.