3221. Cheltenham 2020 (10)

No street art festival in the south of England is complete without something, and often several somethings from My Dog Sighs. The artist seems to be particularly fond of the Cheltenham Paint Festival and this year’s main piece was no disappointment.

My Dog Sighs, Paint Festival 2020, Cheltenham, September 2020
My Dog Sighs, Paint Festival 2020, Cheltenham, September 2020

This is a superb take on urban pigeons in a style that My Dog Sighs has made his own. These clusters of pigeons, identifiable by their necks and iridescent purple and green breasts have faces as varied as their real life counterparts and have a sort of bewildered indifference about them.

My Dog Sighs, Paint Festival 2020, Cheltenham, September 2020
My Dog Sighs, Paint Festival 2020, Cheltenham, September 2020

I very much like the way the beaks are attached to the faces with string and the human faces, almost as if these are people in pigeon costumes, but that would be ridiculous, wouldn’t it?

My Dog Sighs, Paint Festival 2020, Cheltenham, September 2020
My Dog Sighs, Paint Festival 2020, Cheltenham, September 2020

This was one of my favourite pieces at the Festival this year, and a little different from some of the ‘big-ticket’ pieces he has done in previous years. I feel a My Dog Sighs gallery coming on soon.

2851. Star and Garter (4)

Strictly speaking, this is not the Star and Garter but the building opposite it, but it is in the general area. This wonderful collaboration was completed shortly before the lock down and is between painting partners Sled One and Ments.

Sled One, Star and Garter, Bristol, March 2020
Sled One, Star and Garter, Bristol, March 2020

On the left is a beautifully sprayed pigeon in a style that you would instantly associate with Sled One. The bread thing going on? I’m not sure but it could be a pun on pigeon toast instead of pigeon post, but it might be something else altogether.

Sled One, Star and Garter, Bristol, March 2020
Sled One, Star and Garter, Bristol, March 2020

Sled One pieces are often quite mysterious and although there is pretty much always a story going on, understanding it can be tricky. The fabulous colours used and his technique of clever shading to create a 3D effect are of the highest quality in this piece.

Ments, Star and Garter, Bristol, March 2020
Ments, Star and Garter, Bristol, March 2020

Ments, whose work has always had an organic flavour to it, has been experimenting of late with a range of forms and textures, including spheres and metallic objects. This is a really unusual abstract piecem that looks slightly unfinished in the top left hand corner. I will be interested to watch where this new directtion for Ments will take us.

2610. Stokes Croft

Oh what a beauty… a little piece of heaven just dropped onto the wall beneath Banksy’s Mild Mild West, and it is an absolute humdinger by Hazard. Painted only last week, Hazard has smashed it out of the park (to use a modern phrase – my kids would be laughing if they read this, but not much chance of that ever happening).

Hazard, Stokes Croft, Bristol, November 2019
Hazard, Stokes Croft, Bristol, November 2019

I love Hazard’s work, and it is great to see that she is capable of so much more than her trademark portraits. This piece is so good in my view that I actually think it is my favourite of hers… ever. She has captured the colours and proportions of the pigeon perfectly and has somehow created an irridescence on the bird’s breast with greens, whites, yellows and purples – what a job eh? And.., the flowers, flipping heck, the flowers!

I think I might be able to call myself a pigeon fancier, at least this pigeon.

I believe that there is some explanation on the fence in front of this piece, but it wasn’t there when I took these pictures, so I can’t tell you what it says.

Happy days.

1934. Shoreditch, London (14)

A magnificent celebration of the written word by Nomad Clan, depicting a letter and a pigeon, both methods of carrying written messages, to align with the theme of this large wall in Shoreditch on ‘connectivity’.

Nomad Clan, Shoreditch, London, November 2018
Nomad Clan, Shoreditch, London, November 2018

I am a huge fan of this talented duo, who have visited Bristol for Upfest in each of the last two years. This is a masterful work with many elements to focus on, but it is the feathers on the right hand side of the piece that I find most appealing…they have such a lightness about them.

Nomad Clan, Shoreditch, London, November 2018
Nomad Clan, Shoreditch, London, November 2018

Nomad Clan are known for their big walls and this one is big. Their concepts and ideas are so beautifully illustrated with a softness of tone that many artists appear to struggle with. I was very happy to find this piece.

1360. Newfoundland Street (1)

I’m not quite sure how this spot has passed me by until a couple of weeks ago. On the site where my old garage used to be – the place where I got my car MOTd – there is now a large development under construction. I believe that an hotel is being built, although I’m mystified as to why they have chosen to locate one here, it is not exactly a prime site.

Aspire, Newfoundland Street, Bristol, March 2018
Aspire, Newfoundland Street, Bristol, March 2018

There are several Bristol artists featured on this hoarding and the first of these I am witing about is Aspire. His work is always a real treat to find, especially as he now lives in London, and seeing new work by him in Bristol is a rarity. His depiction of birds is in the same category as ATM and Louis Masai and is always an eyebrow-raiser in these urban locations.

Aspire, Newfoundland Street, Bristol, March 2018
Aspire, Newfoundland Street, Bristol, March 2018

In this piece Aspire has painted four pigeons, although these are so beautiful I’d prefer to call them rock doves. In the centre of the picture is, I think, a partridge. I’m not sure of the significance of this…maybe there isn’t any, but it is an unusual assembly of species. Aspire’s work is always brilliant and this piece simply confirms that.

1318. Castlehaven Road, Camden Town (1)

My not-so-recent trip to Camden Town took me back to some places that I had been to on previous visits. This was a particular joy to behold. Always, seeing Dzia pieces is thrilling but to see one so perfectly worked into a wall with an existing piece is just perfect.

Dzia, Castlehaven Road, Camden Town, November 2017
Dzia, Castlehaven Road, Camden Town, November 2017

I first saw this wall, with only the Dotmaster piece in September 2016, but the additional character that the Dzia pigeon has given it works so well. I love the clever touch of the pigeon’s heart, as if it is saying I love this piece.

Dzia, Castlehaven Road, Camden Town, November 2017
Dzia, Castlehaven Road, Camden Town, November 2017

One just has to marvel at the way the lines and shapes that Dzia draws, which on their own don’t make any sense, come together to create such astonishingly lifelike creatures that appear to be animated. Such clever work from this exceptional Belgian artist.