2837. M32 roundabout J3 (202)

Looking back to June 2019 and this rather different offering from Mr Penfold. Those who frequently visit Natural Adventures may be more familiar with his highly designed pieces with ‘liquorice allsort’ colours, often commissions, that adorn many a Bristol shop front.

Mr Penfold, M32 roundabout, Bristol, June 2019
Mr Penfold, M32 roundabout, Bristol, June 2019

I didn’t know Mr Penfold did these character paintings, and this particular one probably remained in the archive due to being unsure who the artist was. How daft am I?… it couldn’t be much clearer, with the writing ‘PENNY’ slapped across the piece. It demonstrates that the human condition is to see what we expect to see and anythinng that falls outside our assumptions is at risk of being discarded. A more forensic approach might be needed. Love this unusual piece.

2790. Gloucester Road

I have waited a long while to photograph this mural from Mr Penfold, mainly because it is not in a place I frequent all that much, there isn’t any other street art to speak of just in this spot, so it requires a special trip or an occasion when I happen to be in the right place at the right time.

Mr Penfold, Gloucester Road, Bristol, February 2020
Mr Penfold, Gloucester Road, Bristol, February 2020

That time was about a month ago on one of those rare sunny days in an otherwise very wet (the wettest on record) February. This mural is what Mr Penfold does so well and so distinctively. In his ‘liquorice allsort’ colours and 1980’s designer patterns Mr Penfold presents with a pleasing abstract pece that turns a boring wall into a point of interest. This is most likely a comission from the shop or possibly from the Business Improvement District. A nice piece.

2554. Midland Road

Obvs this is a piece by Mr Penfold and what a grand piece it is too. This large design that presents five bold patterns separated by jaggedy white lines is typical of his his more recent work. I say more recent, but I should add that this picture was taken in x 2018.

Mr Penfold, Midland Road, Bristol, March 2018
Mr Penfold, Midland Road, Bristol, March 2018

When writing this post, I used StreetView to remind myself of the street name, and was surprised to find that this piece has grown considerably in size and now occupies the facade of the building to the right as well. Watch this space for an update… one day.

The blue plaque, on what is now the ‘To The Moon’ bar and cafe, is a memorial to John Wright or ‘John the Caff’ as he was known locally. His obituary in The Guardian from July 2009 can be found here.

2394. King Street

Mr Penfold is a designer who paints quite a few commissions in and around Bristol, and his characteristically colourful patterns are unmistakably his work. I think that his art tends to divide opinion a little, but I have to say that I am always rather pleased to find a piece by him.

Mr Penfold, King Street, Bristol, August 2019
Mr Penfold, King Street, Bristol, August 2019

This one on King Street is a favourite spot for the artist and is a replacement for a piece he painted there a while back. The most annoying thing about it is that the red wheelie bin is permanently parked right in front of it and it is very hard to get a clean shot (you can see I failed miserably). The colours that Mr Penfold selects always reminds me of confectionary, in particular liquorice allsorts, you can probably see why. There is an interesting feature on the wall just to the right of Mr Penfold’s piece, which is the letters St N P, carved into the stone wall of. I don’t know if this is some kind of stone mason marking or a signpost or something else… answers on a postcard please.

2134. Nelson Street (11)

I have walked past this pioece by Mr Penfold a handful of times, but not until recently did I have my camera with me, which is a pity really because it has been rather spoiled with a tag. It is in a little alley just off Nelson Street and close to St John the Baptist church.

Mr Penfold, Nelson Street, Bristol, March 2019
Mr Penfold, Nelson Street, Bristol, March 2019

His work always contains these abstract designs in bright colours, often incorporating animal print patterning. The colours in this piece are typical of his work, which can often be seen brightening up shop fronts and public spaces. Something about his work reminds me very much of the 1980s, it might be the brashness of the placing together of contrasting patterns and colours. Always instantly recognisable, and usually upbeat work.

2105. Upfest 2018 (132)

Alas, this piece by Mr Penfold did not last long after Upfest, and has since been replaced by a wonderful piece featured on Natural Adventures by SPZero76. The wall is an interesting one in that it is curated by the Hangfire Gallery just opposite, and although the piece appeared during Upfest, I don’t think it constitutes an ‘official’ Upfest piece. I have to say that I am not all that bothered by such things, but I love the abstract work that Mr Penfold has created.

Mr Penfold, Upfest, Bristol, July 2018
Mr Penfold, Upfest, Bristol, July 2018

His work has a real feel of the 1980s about it, a vibrancy and brashness that assaults the eyes with colour and shapes that draw attention. The other thing I associate with his work is Liquorice Allsorts, because of the blacks, pinks, light blues and yellows… yum yum.

I have plenty more pieces by Mr Penfold and feel he is somewhat under represented in this blog… I think that’ll have to change.

1290. Small Street (1)

On my walks to Leonard Lane in the city centre, the walks I really enjoy, I usually come face to face with this hairdresser’s shop as I get spat out of the lane and into Small Street. Every time I go there I forget to take a picture, but not this time.

Mr Penfold, Small Street, Bristol, January 2018
Mr Penfold, Small Street, Bristol, January 2018

The shop front is by Bristol designer Mr Penfold, who does quite a few design commissions in and around the city. Every now and again he also does a street art piece, but that seems to be a bit of a rarity these days. This is typical of his modern, fresh design work and certainly brings some colour to this rather unexceptional frontage.