In Bristol we have a sizeable community of Polish street artists that between them manage to brighten up the city no end. Two of these, Hire and Nevergiveup have a thing for painting bunnies, and here is a reasonably recent one from Hire at Dean Lane. Recently Nevergiveup has opened an Instagram account called @followmyrabbits, and upped his game – I wonder if Hire is responding as this was one of three or four new ones by Hire.
These rabbits by Hire are always a little bit edgy or menacing and there is definitely a dark side to their characters. Nonetheless, I love coming across them, and they are a brilliant foil to his fabulous graffiti writing.
The master of pink, slightly grotesque body parts strikes again, this time in Dean Lane. Yes, its Stupid Stupid Meathole, the artist with the best name and some of the most unusual creations on the streets of Bristol.
This appears to be an assemblage of faces with rather phallic noses and some stitches thrown in for good measure. I think SSM has an extraordinarily creative mind, I mean these things are slightly odd aren’t they? I really love finding his work, which can be difficult because he doesn’t paint all that often and tends to spread his work about the place a bit. All good in my book though.
I got really lucky just before Halloween when I took my lunchtime constitutional down to Dean Lane. I always expect to see something new and occasionally expect to see an artist at work, but when that artist is Rusk it is a real treat and make no mistake.
Halloween I have observed is a time when street artists seem to enjoy hitting the streets and stretching their repertoire with a seasonal theme, which is always fun for people like me. This witty piece conflates Rusk with Count Duckula, the vegetarian duck vampire…who ever dreamed up that cartoon series?
Rusk always has time for a chat, and as he does so he makes fine adjustments to his work, always seeking perfection. Much of what I have learned about the Bristol street art scene and culture I have gathered from our conversations. I love the way he works so hard to get his pieces just right. It is a privilege to see him painting.
Unfortunately light conditions were a bit tricky – that autumnal sunshine is a real bugger, but at least I got some shots of the piece before it got tagged the following day. The day carried on being amazing with the arrival of Jee See just as Rusk was finishing off. My lunch break took a little longer than expected!
I just love it when these two get together, which fortunately they seem to manage rather regularly. These Laic217 bookended Cort pieces do tend to follow a formula in terms of presentation, but the characters and writing always offer something visually stimulating.
Cort’s writing style seems to be quite versatile and he has produces a real gem here, incorporating soft curves and angular shapes all into the same piece. It is an unusual and slightly unconventional style, but that is what makes it stand apart from other writing.
Then on to the Laic217 characters. His skeletons have become such a prominent feature of walls around Bristol that they must have entered the sub-conscious of a great many Bristolians on exposure alone.
Rarely disappointing these figures include many of the things we expect from Laic217 – great clothing, skulls, smiley’s brick walls, bucket hats. I love the bit of fun too with the left hand side character using a roller to spell out the two artist’s names at the top of the piece. Another classic wall.
This collaboration is a real treat and raises the bar by quite some margin. It is by Subtle and Rezwonk and is quite the best collaboration I have seen on this wall this year, in fact possible anywhere in Bristol.
Rezwonk has provided an incredible background of little white symbols – actually I think they are made up of the letters R E Z W O N K, and in amongst them are some bright green ones randomly spaced. Each of the symbols has been dabbed, probably with a cloth, to give them some texture. This really does provide a perfect backdrop.
The writing from Subtle is nothing short of sublime, every single part of it touching on perfect, right down to the hex shading on the S and the T providing texture and interest, but it is the 3D effect that really sets this piece apart. It is hard to look at it and not be fooled into thinking it has been written on a board that stands proud of the wall by a couple of inches. Also some of the accents have picked up the same bright green used by Rezwonk, to provide some read-across between the two.
An utterly outstanding collaboration that takes collaborations to a new level.
I arrived at this piece a little too late to see it in its original condition. It had been a collaboration between Mr Draws (in the middle) bookended by Tasha Bee. However, before I managed to get to see it, Oner had made a little contribution of his own.
I have to admit that I rather like Oner’s burners. There is a certain honesty about them, unpretentious but nicely turned out and often just a little bit edgy. Tasha Bee has rapidly made it into my group of favourite Bristol artists with her stylised characters and pretty flower motifs.
She is very prolific, and even today on a long walk with the dog I found a couple more of her pieces. There is something rather spiritual about her characters, it might be something to do with the simplicity of the lines or the closed eyes or the little peace and love signs, I’m not sure, but they ooze serenity. It is a pity I didn’t see the Mr Draws bit in the middle, but I can imagine it.
Ok, so I have been doing a little bit of a trawl through my archives to let a few overlooked pieces see the light of day. This one by Hire I managed to photograph moments before it was buffed over, I forget who by (I think it was Dibz), but you can see the paint can at the ready in the bottom left of the picture.
Hire is one of several Polish artists in Bristol, adding an international feel to the work we see here. His writing tends to be very cryptic and his lettering angular and sharp, looking like shards of metal. Normally his writing spells out his name, but I’m not so sure that it does in this piece. It is quite a ‘dark’ piece, which is often the case with his work, even his bunnies are touched with menace or melancholy.