3835. Upfest 2021 75×75 (26)

Sometimes words are not enough.

I am very tempted to end the post at this point and just leave you to enjoy the pictures, but that would be a bit lazy on my part and short-changing you of my talents as a street art rapporteur (LOL). This piece is by genius artist Liam Bononi.

Liam Bononi, North Street Standard, Bristol, July 2021, Upfest 21
Liam Bononi, North Street Standard, Bristol, July 2021, Upfest 21

I haven’t encountered Liam Bononi before, but he is firmly on my radar now and I will be keeping an eye out for his extraordinary work. He has a fabulous website, and in his ‘About’ section there is a link to a short biographic video, which is well worth a quick watch if you have time. Liam is a Brizilian, now living in Liverpool, who started painting walls in 2007 and has decorated walls all over the world. Now is the turn for Bristol.

Liam Bononi, North Street Standard, Bristol, July 2021, Upfest 21
Liam Bononi, North Street Standard, Bristol, July 2021, Upfest 21

In his biography, the following sentence stands out as best describing what lies behind his paintings:

His pieces represent the quest for the divine essence that inhabits each one of us and his art is a narrative about the human beings’ transformation through self-knowledge and search of the self true (sic).

Heady stuff, but then this is a heady piece and one of the most compelling I have ever seen at Upfest. Liam Bononi has just set the bar at a new level. My advice… seek out his work whenever you can.

3810. Upfest 2021 75×75 (17)

Although we might not have seen as many international artists joining in with Upfest’s 75 walls in 75 days event as we might have expected in a non-COVID year we have seen a lot of artists from all over the UK come to Bristol and brighten up our walls with their extraordinary talent. Fem Sorcell is a Cumbrian artist based in Sheffield whose arrival on the street art scene has come via textile design, illustration, art directing, prosthetics and makeup for film.

Fem Sorcell, North Street Standard, Bristol, June 2021, Upfest 21
Fem Sorcell, North Street Standard, Bristol, June 2021, Upfest 21

This unusual piece is beautifully designed and crafted to fit the space perfectly and contains some great colours and details that demand more than a cursory glance. There are one or two elements that remind me a little of our own Bex Glover, particularly the red, yellow and white petals.

Sadly this was one of the dozen or so Upfest pieces that was vandalised earlier this week by some absolute idiot. There really are no words.

3633. North Street Standard

I genuinely miss my occasional conversations with Andrew Burns Colwill. I haven’t seen the artist for well over a year now, possibly two, and that is far too long. During that time I haven’t seen too much of his street work either, so it was with great joy that I found this recent piece by him on the wall of the North Street Standard.

Andrew Burns Colwill, North Street Standard, Bristol, April 2021
Andrew Burns Colwill, North Street Standard, Bristol, April 2021

One of the things that chimes for me with all of ABC’s work is the environmental theme at its heart, and this piece is more overt than some of his work, with a direct call to action emblazoned on the left hand side.

Andrew Burns Colwill, North Street Standard, Bristol, April 2021
Andrew Burns Colwill, North Street Standard, Bristol, April 2021

The Earth sitting at the top end of an hourglass is a fabulous visual metaphor for the urgency of the predicament we find ourselves in. As the Earth drips down into the lower half of the hour glass, a face is seen in the centre, as if the soul of the planet was being drained out.

This is a fabulous piece of fine art from one of my favourite people in Bristol.

We all must do what we can, and we can do what we must.

3629. North Street Standard

I was passing by the North Street Standard about a week ago and there was a young lady sweeping the newly designed outside drinking area. I took the opportunity to ask her who had painted the shutters. She disappeared for what seemed a lifetime and eventually emerged to inform me that it was painted by Nick Harvey (Kin Dose). I thanked her kindly. What she hadn’t told me was that The Hass had a hand in the work too.

Kin Dose and the Hass, North Street, Bristol, April 2021
Kin Dose and the Hass, North Street, Bristol, April 2021

These shutters were probably in need of a makeover and with lockdown restrictions easing, what a great time to do it. The neon pink single-line drawings of people enjoying the bar is both striking and inspired and sets a tone for the establishment.

Kin Dose and the Hass, North Street, Bristol, April 2021
Kin Dose and the Hass, North Street, Bristol, April 2021

I would never have guessed the artists if I hadn’t been told, which is often the case with commissions, due to their bespoke nature. A fine street piece by these two miracle-workers.