I haven’t posted much by Tasha Bee lately, not because she hasn’t been painting, but more because I haven’t been able to get out much over the past fortnight. This one is under the M32 in the wet-weather DIY skate park, known as the M32 Spot.
Sprayed on one of the ramps rather than on a wall, this is another of her calm, soulful trademark figures with beautifully decorated hair. Recently she has been working or her writing which from the Instagram shots I have seen is really exciting. Unfortunately I’ve not seen any yet… it’s a turnover thing.
I cannot think of a period in the four or so years that I have been writing about Bristol street art where there have been so many ‘new’ entrants into the painting scene. One such artist is Diced Mango who once on my radar only a few months ago is now producing pieces on a regular basis in several spots around the city.
This recent piece in St Werburghs tunnel combines a character with writing, a format common amongst graffiti writers. The portrait is naively drawn with Diced Mango’s trademark coloured ‘string’ hair.
The writing in gold is in a rather nice organic form. I think there is a lot more to come from this artist and I am looking forward to seeing how his work develops over the coming months and years.
So back we go now to St Werburghs tunnel where we find another Face 1st piece, this time it is just the face and hair which has a leaf-like appearance. I think the hair might spell Face, as in other works by the artist, but I fear I am losing my grasp a little and see writing in things where there is none.
I think that Face 1st tends to do a couple of these at a time when there is a paint jam in the tunnel, because there always seems to be something by him in there at any one time. This piece features his commonly used purples and pinks which often dominate his colour palettes.
Ubiquitous is one of the words I would use to describe the work of Tasha Bee. It doesn’t seem to matter where I wonder, I end up finding some of her work. This piece I found while taking the dog on a long walk around Montpelier – I wasn’t even hunting it down.
Tasha Bee I think also wears the crown at the moment for being the most prolific artist in Bristol, giving Laic217 and Nevergiveup and Facef1st a run for their money. I have said before how much I love the serenity of her faces, and am enjoying more and more the fills she is using for the hair. Great work.
Alex Lucas is no stranger to these pages and is responsible for bringing street art closer to the citizens of Bristol in a charming and accessible way. Any visitor to the city is likely to have seen a piece of her work, because she has had a lot of commissions and her illustrations lend themselves very well to shops, cafés and other high street businesses.
Her piece for Upfest was on yet another new wall space, but rather inconveniently interrupted by a gate. Alex has used this to her advantage and incorporated the gate as a way of joining her two hares in conversation.
Although on the surface her work looks quite simple, it takes a long time to produce, and this piece was a real labour of love, given the number of weather-related interruptions. Each of the hairs on her characters are individually hand drawn, and as we ought to know, hares are hairy.
Most Upfest walls are re-used each year, with only the occasional one remaining as a more permanent piece. I suspect that this one will have a new artwork on it next year, which is rather odd in the case of Alex Lucas, because one is accustomed to the permanence of her work. It’s pink, it has animals…what’s not to like?
Now this charming piece is something rather refreshingly different and eye-catching. It is one of two pieces that I am aware of painted by the London-based artist Vanesa Longchamp at Upfest, the other being a North Street shutter piece (to follow).
It was good to witness this piece taking shape during the festival, although I think that the high winds experienced over the weekend must have made it rather difficult, particularly at the exposed site of Ashton Gate, for the artists.
Vanesa’s simple style betrays some fantastic technique and the shading of the hair and twinkle in the eyes is masterful. I’ve not come across any of herv work before but will be on the look out from now on. Great stuff.