3254. John Street (9)

And so on to the ninth archway in the John Street open-air gallery and this magnificent portrait piece by Hazard. My understanding is that this was her second attempt after she had had to buff over her first one for being controversial. This disappoints me a little because art is an expression and reflection of our lives and times and we shouldn’t hide away from difficult issues, otherwise where would we be? China? North Korea? On the upside however, Hazard has rewarded us with this outstanding portrait of Jeff Knight, a Big Issue vendor and big character in Stokes Croft.

Hazard, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Hazard, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

I love Jeff. He is one of the brilliant things about living in Bristol. He greets everyone in the street with a big smile and kind words irrespective of who they are or what they look like. This piece is not the first piece of street art to feature Jeff, John D’oh sprayed a fabulous stencil of him a few years ago. Hazard’s portrait is an honest representation and skillfully painted. In this one archway we have two legends of Bristol street culture.

John D'oh, North Street, Bristol, June 2016
John D’oh, North Street, Bristol, June 2016

3244. John Street (8)

I would like to capture more of Conrico’s work than I do, but he tends to paint a lot in places that I don’t go to very often or at all, so it is always great to find a piece like this one in an archway in John Street.

Conrico, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Conrico, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

This open air gallery is one of the most refreshing things to happen on the legal wall side of things to happen in Bristol for a long time, and I hope that when the development is finished that the gallery is continued, although I am not optimistic. The piece itself is a little bit weird and I am not too certain what is happening. The central character with big hair appears to be telling the bugs not to touch the light, or he is being warned not to touch the light. Either way, touching the light seems to be a bad idea. This is an unusual pieceand I’d love to know more about the story behind it.

3235. John Street (7)

Regular readers of Natural Adventures will be very familiar with this artist although may not have seen anything even remotely like this from him before, indeed I am not too sure I have. It is by Nevergiveup or Followmyrabbits – he has several names, and I think he might also go under the name of Eldey.

Nevergiveup, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Nevergiveup, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

The battle of Britain is beautifully commemorated in this mural featuring a spitfire and Union flag and Polish flag. Nevergiveup is Polish and of course Poland was an ally during the second world war and many Poles joined the RAF and became fighter pilots – there is a story being told here. The piece has a lot of movement going on and the spitfire itself is really well done – such an unusual piece for Bristol and from this artist. Great to see.

3230. John Street (6)

On Monday this week I posted a gallery of Zase’s work in Bristol and it certainly caught the attention of many visitors to Natural Adventures. This is his archway piece in John Street and it is an absolute beauty.

Zase, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Zase, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

I think that Zase is the only artist who has used the archway to create a kind of depth effect, almost like a trompe l’oeil piece. The plants are beautifully painted, a swiss cheese plant (Monstera deliciosa) and I’m not too sure about the red leaved one (Note to self – do a cheese plant special). Plants featured in his recent collaboration piece with Silent Hobo and it would seem to be something Zase is having a bit of fun with at the moment. A really classy piece.

3226. John Street (5)

When have I not liked a Kid Crayon piece? An easy answer… never. Some double negatives there, but what I am saying is that I love Kid Crayon’s work and this Archway piece in John Street is a real gem.

Kid Crayon, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Kid Crayon, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

This open air gallery of ten archways is a fantastic showcase for some of Bristol’s great street artists and Kid Crayon has seized the opportunity and come up with this piece that resembles a stained-glass window. Crayon, cat, cup and cactus, are all here in this portrait piece set in front of a blue glass window. Absolutely wonderful.

3215. John Street (4)

Kosc is and artist whose black and white portraits are in complete contrast with his other street art work that goes under a different name. He keeps these personas separate and I respect that and will do the same. This is the fourth archway piece that I have posted from this amazing street gallery in John Street. If you live in Bristol, it really is worth seeking out.

Kosc, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Kosc, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

The portrait (thank you Paul) is of an Australian gangster called De Gracy who was picked up by police in Sydney and his mugshot photograph taken, alongside another gangster called Edward Dalton. I guess Kosc chose this portrait because it works well with light and dark shades and shows off his skills. This is a striking addition to the Archways in John Street.

3212. John Street (3)

It is so good to see T-Rex gaining such a prominent spot for one of her fabulous dinosaurs. This is the third archway, looking from left to right, in this magnificent back-street gallery offered up by the developers of a hotel that is being built right in the heart of Bristol’s old quarter. The developers have their work cut out, because the buildings they are converting are probably the ugliest in the whole city.

T-Rex, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
T-Rex, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

I was told by John Nation that T-Rex’s piece is not one of her regular dinosaurs (unsurprisingly a tyrannosaurus rex) but a depiction of one of the dinosaurs displayed up at the Bristol Museum (so well worth a visit if you ever get the opportunity). This is a beautifully painted, clean and happy piece with very broad appeal. Perfect for a city centre location.

3207. John Street (2)

A welcome return to John Street and the second of the special pieces in the ten archways on the side of a building undergoing redevelopment. This archway has been beautifully painted by 3Dom and is a direct reference to the Covid-19 pandemic.

3Dom, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
3Dom, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

As social commentators, many street artists have found the coronavirus pandemic to be a rich source of inspiration and 3Dom has created this powerful piece. This clever work feels rather threatening with CCTV cameras and a whole host of intimidating shapes and references in red surrounding the blue light of humanity – I suppose the blue light is a symbol of hope. It will passs. A nice shout out to Hazard too.

3203. John Street (1)

This is the first of ten very special pieces from John Street, tucked away in the old quarter of Bristol just behind Nelson Street. A developer is working on a building that has ten archways and they have run a competition for invited street artists to paint each of the archways with a small cash prize for the best one chosen by a panel of judges. That is the most that I know at the moment, gathered from a chance meeting with John Nation (the godfather of street art in Bristol). I will add more details once I have researched them properly.

Sled One, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Sled One, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

This is the first archway working from left to right and is by the amazing Sled One who is telling us another amazing story in  the way he does so well. The main character is a rabbit chilling out at home (a sign of the times maybe) clutching a phone and a beer with a smoking cigarette in an ashtray. It looks like the rather forlorn rabbit is texting friends to keep in touch. He is weating a giant comedy shoe while a black cat watches on. So many details and so much to look at in this remarkable piece by Sled One and a great way to open up this series of posts from John Street. Hats off to the developers.

586. John Street (1)

Some pieces in Bristol are really hard to photograph and this is one of them. It is a large work by 3Dom sprayed on the side of a business unit in a residential area of St Werburghs. There are always cars and vans parked outside the unit, so the pictures are from rather awkward angles and distances to avoid bonnets, wing mirrors interfering with the shot.

3Dom, John Street, Bristol, May 2016
3Dom, John Street, Bristol, May 2016

I spotted this some time ago and have tried, unsuccessfully, to get a single clean shot of the whole piece. It is a 3Dom classic. Dreamlike and fantastical. I am not entirely sure what exactly is going on in the picture, but looking at the detail of the piece brings out more than first meets the eye.

3Dom, John Street, Bristol, May 2016
3Dom, John Street, Bristol, May 2016

For example, the leg is like an X-ray exposing the bones, and the shoes are literally rooted to the ground. The head is like a light attracting moths and insects and the whole figure appears to be paying homage to a little toadstool.

3Dom, John Street, Bristol, May 2016
3Dom, John Street, Bristol, May 2016

Creative and fun, but utterly unintelligible. I love 3Dom’s work.