Aah! the familiar large letters with deep 3D shading of Bristol’s mighty Soker. It doesn’t seem to matter what design, shapes or colours Soker uses, his supreme qulaity always shines through. I cant’t fully identify what it is that makes a piece stand out from the crowd, but it might have something to do with the assured skill and confidence that the artist embeds into the work at the time of spraying.
I aven’t seen too much from Soker over the winter months – perhaps he is more of a fair-weather artist or maybe he has been busy with other projects, either way, it is always a pleasure to see anything by him.
Bnie is a reasonably regular visitor to Bristol who I think comes from Wales, possibly Swansea, I think that because she often paints with Smak, although not on this occasion. I do like it that graffiti/street artists make the trip to Bristol to paint because it all adds to the amazing diversity of work we see here. Bristol is one of a handful of cities that has the full spectrum of street art from tagging right through to high-end commissions. Some towns and cities don’t have the street art culture, but hold a festival to draw in great artists and of course the tourists. Places like Chichester for example, but it is all a little bit too sanitised for my taste. The art is invariably great, but the culture is missing.
Anyhow, this is a lovely piece by Bnie and deploys several of her trademarks, most notably the decorative patterning she uses in her fills and 3D work. There really is an awful lot to like about this modest piece tucked away on the M32 cycle path. I seem to have quite a few of her pieces in my archive, I’ll try and dig some out.
I took a riverside walk with the dog last week and found this recent and absolutely brilliant Nevergiveup (@followmyrabbits) piece. The weird thing about this was that as I was walking along the pathway I saw two men talking and I was sure I recognised one of them. I carried on anyway for about ten minutes before turning back along the path to get back to the car. I passed the two gentlemen again and the penny dropped. I had indeed recognised one of them… it was only Nevergiveup himself.
We had a little chat, and I asked if he had just painted this rabbit pair – he said he had not done it that day, but a weeek or two before. It was looking so fresh still.
I am however a little confused… Since the artist left Bristol for Bath, he seems to still be painting in the city with alarming regularity. I told him I can’t keep up with him and he said he can’t keep up with himself. At least I have a whole ton of rabbits in storage to share with you if things quieten down… as if.
It is a great time of year for street art because although there is not a huge amount of action (something of a relief for me I can tell you) on the streets it is a time when artists are doing their ‘first piece of the new year/decade’ and it somehow feels a bit like a fresh start.
This new one from Pekoe on the M32 cycle path is a fresh and clean start to the year. Of course the portrait piece wouldn’t be a Pekoe work without the big hair, and what magnificent hair with a crown, hearts and face concealed in it. A wonderful way to kick off January.
Another New Year collaboration, they are coming thick and fast, this time from Decay and Lens. Decay is of course well known to me and to readers of Natural Adventures, but this is a debut piece for Lens, which is perhaps not at all surprising given that he comes from Melbourne, Australia and is just visiting.
I do like it when artists from different places hook up and paint together, it makes for a terrific sense of community. This Decay half of this combo is everything we would come to expect from the artist and ticks so many boxes… the shapes of the letters, the extravagant fills and the little ‘motion’ highlights in black on the outside of the lettering to give a sense of movement and energy to the whole piece. Perfect.
Using a similar colour palette to Decay’s, Lens has an altogether different letter shape, much more angular with sharp edges and corners. Lens’ fills and decorations are absolutely magnificent, and this is an accomplished piece of graffiti writing. It is so good to see some work from an Australian artist, and it is great to see that Lens has included a little shout out to Rezwonk, who often teams up with Decay, a nice touch.
It has been a little while since I last saw some writing from Nightwayss, so it was a nice surprise to find this ‘NIGHT’ on the M32 cycle path. There is an interesting colour palette and a highly complex design, but I have to say it doesn’t quite work for me and I can’t put my finger on it.
Maybe the lack of clear definition around the letters is a little unconventional, and the colours tend to merge a bit. Also the texture of the wall isn’t very helpful with this busy design. I fear I might protest too much, and anyway, photobombing dog seems to rather like it.
On a wall that is predominantly used for graffiti writing it was great to see this rather unusual collaborative mural appear recently by Kool Hand and Conrico. If I am honest I have absolutely no idea at all what is going on in the piece but when Conrico is involved, there is usually a story of some sort behind the piece.
On the left is a character by Kool Hand who I would more commonly associate with painting animals such as crocodiles or orangutans, but the solid fill and clearly defined outlines give this piece away as being by Kool Hand.
The rest of the piece seems to be made up of floating islands, two of which appear to be at war with one another. Unfathomable, but original and interesting. I am a big fan of Conrico’s work and am enjoying finding pieces by him dotted all over the place. More to come in a day or two.