I think that this is the largest mural I have seen from Bex Glover, and it is an absolute beauty. The recently completed piece is in good company, being adjacent to large works by Gemma Compton and Zoe Power.
Two foxes tail to tail and nose to nose are the centrepiece of this typically ornate piece from Bex Glover, all set on a dark turquoise background. There is a symmetry to the piece that is interrupted only by a few subtle differences. There is a small quote at the bottom of the piece that reads ‘stronger together’, a narrative that has run through the coronavirus epidemic and the black lives matter movement.
The foxes, such an iconic symbol of Bristol, represent the togetherness talked about and convey a positive message. This is a lovely new piece from Bex Glover.
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.
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.
One of the most stunning collaborations of Upfest 2018 was this magnificent piece by Nuno Viegas and Tymon De Laat on the side of the Coopers Arms, where the polar bear piece by Andrew Burns Colwill was painted the year before.
This piece was painted in two halves separated by a horizontal strip, a feature of the wall which was put to good use by the artists. The bottom half which features the gloved hand of the character tossing a spray can fat cap is by Nuno Viegas. The detail in the latex glove with paint on it is simply breathtaking.
The top half of the collaboration is by Tymon De Laat and presents us with one of his superb trademark portraits, where the face is divided up into different shaded areas in a symmetrical pattern almost as if the subject is wearing face paint. This is such a strong design idea and makes his work istantly recognisable.
This was truly one of the best pieces of the whole festival, and if you don’t believe me go down and take a look while you still have a chance and check out the detail.
Walking the dog one lunchtime a few weeks ago I was lucky enough to meet two lovely artists busy at work at the farm end of St Werburghs tunnel. I recognised the work of Morny instantly, his naive style is both eye-catching and compelling, so I went and introduced myself. I was touched that he seemed to know about my Instagram/Twitter accounts, but I don’t know if he has ventured as far as Natural Adventures just yet. He introduced me to his painting partner Billy, who was painting a bright and colourful mural to his right.
I’m glad I took these WIP (Work in Progress) shots because when I returned a couple of days later to take pictures of the finished wall, it had been painted over. I cringed a little, because I told them that turnover on this particular wall was quite slow and that their work would be there for a while. Just shows what I know huh? Billy’s work reminds me a little of Zoe Power’s, because of its simple form and colourful fills. I do hope she isn’t put off by the rapidity of the disappearance of her piece and that she paints more walls this year.
There was one remaining part of Morny’s piece that survived for my return, but it only really hints at what had been there. Such a pity. I guess it is impossible to be everywhere all the time.
I caught sight of this amazing new mural by Conrico from the M32 and I was driving past a week or two back. I had to go back and take another look and found that it is a large commission piece for the ‘Jerusalem Falafel’ shop in Newfoundland Road.
Conrico is an artist who I have only really known about for the last year or so but his work has certainly made an impact on me and he has featured in Natural Adventures rather a lot, which is a good thing. This bright and colourful mural features a young man in a red shirt and baseball cap grasping a wrap framed in a wall of fruit and vegetables. It is all very Conrico. It would be interesting to see how other Bristol artists might have played out this brief… now there’s an idea.
I have been aware of this piece for a little while, but it is only when I changed my walking pattern in the Dean Lane area that I found it. It was such a wonderful surprise to find an enormous mural like this when I wasn’t actually looking for it.
The artist Xenz is an absolute master at painting this kind of fantastical scene. In this piece he has painted a conventional countryside view at dawn (I think) with his trademark bee eaters (although these might be parakeets) strung out along a telegraph wire. I imagine that this was a commission, or a very nice gift from Xenz to a friend. It is sure to go down as a classic Bristol mural and one for me to upload onto the Street Art Cities app when I have a moment.
This piece is bound to turn a few heads as it is on a corner in the road where people will be driving slowly – it will be particularly prominent for those driving North. Xenz has a strong relationship with Bristol, I think he used to live here, so it is always a real pleasure to see his work, especially one as large and prominent as this. I am sure this will become a local landmark and is one for the street art tour circuit.
Zoe Power has had quite an impact on Natural Adventures recently and this magnificent Upfest 2018 piece reinforces her strong portfolio. I like to call her work mural work as distinct from the broader term street art because although it is street art, it has an element of measure, control and finesse that sets it apart.
I didn’t actually find this long wall at the festival itself, but a few days later when I was patrolling the area loooking for hidden extras and gems and in this piece I certainly found one. Zoe Power’s bold work is striking and captivating and her solid fills keep her work clean and stylised. I know that one of her influences is the French artist Matisse, and you can really see it in her work.
This is quite a difficult wall to present in all its glory because of its length, so I have only posted a couple of key panels, but I think you get a sense of the whole thing. The mural, I assume, is entitled ‘Deeds not words’, so at this point I’ll put a sock in it.
There isn’t much street art to speak of in Redland (where I live) so it is extra good to have found this bright and cheery piece under Lover’s Lane bridge at the end of the platform at Redland Station. This is a very nice collaboration between Zoe Power and Dave Bain.
Now Zoe Power I know all about and I love her mural works that are dotted about Bristol. Dave Bain however, I know absolutely nothing about and I haven’t heard of him berfore. Together though they have produced something that is truly collaborative and it is difficult to know where one artist ends and the other begins. If I might say so, this is very representative of the Redland area… safe, clean and decent. My favourite bit is the skateboarder’s hair – a real Zoe Power signature.
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.
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.
With a name like Zoe Power, you are never going to be easily forgotten. Marry that up with great talent and you get stunning memorable pieces like this one in North Street. Painted above Zara’s Chocolates in North Street, next door to the Upfest shop and Gemma Compton’s outstanding mural, this piece was created as part of Upfest’s Summer Editions and for me is one of the highlights.
I met Zoe Power at the Cheltenham Paint Festival, and I fear I may have bored her rigid, but she was polite and humoured me and my barrage of questions and natterings. I am an enormous fan of her work and love this Matisse-inspired mural (he is one of my all time favourite artists). There is a lot to like here, the female figures symmetrically placed around the windows of the building holding up symbols of the solar system, set on a plant-patterned background. I love, love, love it. I want to see a lot more of her stuff.