1853. Hebron Road (1)

I think this one from qWeRT goes back to roughly the time of Upfest 2018 and is pasted on a door, along with multiple other wheatpastes – you can see one from Losthills just to the left – that is opposite one of the Upfest feature walls.

qWeRT, Hebron Road, Bristol, June 2018
qWeRT, Hebron Road, Bristol, June 2018

I am always happy finding qWeRT wheatpastes, it is a little bit of a game to hunt them down, and I am pretty safe in the knowledge that there are others in Bristol that I have yet to find. The googly-eyed character is in loving mode in this piece.

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1755. City Road (8)

It feels like if I keep my eyes open long enough and scour each inch of Bristol I will keep finding paste ups by qWeRT. This right royal googly-eyed character is in City Road only a few metres away from another paste up by the same artist from last year.

qWeRT, City Road, Bristol, September 2018
qWeRT, City Road, Bristol, September 2018

As well as admiring the original ideas and artwork that qWeRT puts into these wheatpastes I get a great amount of pleasure each time I find one. I think that the artist only visits Bristol about once a year, but it takes me that long to find many of these little characters, and some I never find no matter how hard I look. Come back soon.

1726. Upper York Street (13)

Whenever qWeRT comes to town there is always an exciting trail of wheatpastes hidden in the back streets of Bristol. I am constantly on a quest to find them, but know there are some I will never find.

qWeRT, Upper York Street, Bristol, August 2018
qWeRT, Upper York Street, Bristol, August 2018

This one is on the pillar of a car park, which adjoins a former church and so is entirely appropriate to its environs. Jesus is rarely depicted in street art, which is peculiar in a way, because in years gone by he has been the subject of countless murals, inside and outside. This is a wonderful piece…a googly eyed Jesus – not something you see every day.

1679. Stokes Croft

Only a few days ago I posted some work by qWeRT in Cortona, Italy that must have been pasted up some years ago, judging by the shift in style (and also the fact that the Italian pieces were signed QWERTY). This is much more what qWeRT’s stuff looks like at the moment.

qWeRT, Stokes Croft, Bristol, July 2018
qWeRT, Stokes Croft, Bristol, July 2018

I love this particular wheatpaste with our googly eyed hero riding a scooter, and seeming so right for this particular area. The door is really quite a messy scrawl of tags, and indeed I think I must have walked past this piece several times before I actually noticed it…it is fairly well camouflaged. Hurrah for qWeRT coming to Bristol and leaving us these little presents dotted about the place.

1672. Cortona, Tuscany, Italy

It is an extraordinary thing to travel to a foreign land and enjoy all that feels exotic and different, to bathe in a culture and history so different from your own. More extraordinary still is to stumble upon the familiar in such a context, but that is exactly what I did on a recent visit to Cortona in Tuscany.

qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018
qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018

Of course, while walking through the streets of the town I needed no encouragement to take a peek down the side streets to see what surprises might lurk. I have to say that wheatpastes by qWeRT were not exactly what I had in mind, but that is precisely what I found.

qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018
qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018

Altogether I think I discovered five pasteups by this ‘Natural Adventures’ regular, each in a different stage of decay. I would guess that these had been up for a few years, and I find it all rather touching that the civic authorities haver chosen not to take them down.

qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018
qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018

What also interests me is that there are copies of the same wheatpastes, but they appear each to have been hand painted separately rather than printed. I admire qWeRT’s choice of destination for these wheatpastes and am thrilled to have inadvertantly found them.

qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018
qWeRT, Cortona, Italy, August 2018

It also looks like qWeRT has dropped the Y from the signature since pasting these up.

1651. Hillgrove Street (7)

I don’t visit Hillgrove Street as much as I used to when I first started writing about street art, probably because turnover of work is very low there, so there is rarely new stuff to find. However, it is always worth checking every now and then, and these two (relatively) new pieces bear this out.

qWeRT and RIP, Hillgrove Street, Bristol, August 2018
qWeRT and RIP, Hillgrove Street, Bristol, August 2018

The wheatpaste on top is by qWeRT, who seems to have blitzed Bristol some time during late spring or early summer. This is another charming googly eyed pair…there is always so much hope and love in these paste ups.

The bird below is a nice simple stencil by RIP who is an occasional visitor to Bristol, and always leaves behind as few treasures to uncover. Both pieces complement each other and are placed carefully. Placement is a key skill for small stencils and paste ups. All good.

1603. North Street

The great thing about visiting wheatpasters is that rarely do they come to town and leave only one paste up. Rather they tend to leave a trail of little treasures dotted about the place, and that is exactly what qWeRT did on a recent trip to Bristol.

qWeRT, North Street, Bristol, July 2018
qWeRT, North Street, Bristol, July 2018

I particularly like this one of our googly eyed hero riding a scooter. The placement is in a little alcove that has been a honeypot for small stencils and wheatpastes, but is in its last throws as a street art spot due to the completion of a new development adjoining it. This is one of the things I am noticing about Bristol at the moment, it seems that there is a decreasing number of places where street artists can do their work. Gentrification is on the move and with it comes displacement. Of course, we all want a prosperous and attractice city, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder.