Yet another fine collaboration between Cheo and Soker – these two seem to be on something of a roll at the moment, producing countless pieces all over the city of Bristol. This one perfectly fills the space on the hoardings in front of a new development.
The piece is bookended by a pair of mischievous spray can characters painted by Cheo, and in the middle of all of this is a dazzling piece of writing by Soker which spells out SUMOE. I guess I should know what sumoe is all about, but alas I have no idea. There is a whole bunch of #sumoe graffiti Instagram, most of it in the USA.
Cheo has pretty much nailed it with his bookends as he seems to with pretty much everything he does. With their dark furry eyebrows, there is something of the Muppets in his characters. Of course we are also graced with the presence of one of his signature bees.
Soker’s writing is composed primarily of four horizontal layers ranging from light blue at the top through to light purple at the bottom, each layer smattered with accents or decoration. He has also worked quite an unusual double 3D shadow cast by the letters. This is a great collaboration from this ASK duo, and well worth the trip to Raleigh Road.
Well now, here is another fabulous stencil by Stephen Quick, and due to its location in a car park is almost impossible to photograph, so I will rebrand these images as ‘arty’ on account of the fine reflections on the shiny black bonnet of the annoying car parked in front of the piece.
Once again Stephen Quick spoils us with an image of an iconic figure in the shape of Totoro. The piece is called ‘I bet you’re Totoro and is a direct reference to a massive manga film I have never seen, made in 1988, ‘My Neighbour Totoro‘. Exposing my ignorance even further, I am not sure who the lady in the picture is, but I am sure she is probably famous. I am not very good with Iconic references and usually do really badly on those online quizzes you see from time to time. Now ask me something about natural history and I am onto a winner.
This is a really fabulous and intricate stencil and I know that Stephen spends many hours preparing for these pieces. Maybe one day he could give me some basic tips for my ambitions one day to join the ranks of Bristol street artists.
At the far end of the Tobacco Factory staff car park is this modest and ephemeral piece by Annika Pixie. It was painted during an annual weekend paint jam organised by Stephen Quick.
This wispish and haunting portrait is very much in the style that is associated with Annika. There are two things I particularly like about thuis piece…the veil-like see through curtain that sits between the subject and the viewer, and the nicely arranged stencils that surround the whole piece.
Every year in May, Stephen Quick organises a live paint jam at the Tobacco Factory Sunday market and invites along a bunch of friends to paint with him. Somehow I managed to miss it this year, which is a pity, but I did manage to get down eventually to see the results.
This is a fabulous multi-layered stencil from Lemak who creates these incredible pop-culture pieces. This one is of the legendary Jean-Michel Basquiat whose place in street art history is hugely significant. The crowns around the piece honour the subject as the king. Crowns denote the respect in which a particular artist is held and tend to be reserved for the upper echelons of the street graffiti/art scene.
It is a while since I last saw a new piece from Lemak (I think he has been busy in his studio) so it was great to see this one. The quality of his work is really out of the top drawer.
I first became aware of Stephen Quick’s work only a few metres from this spot with his fabulous kiss between Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford. To this day I am a big fan of his intricate stencils featuring contemporary stars and icons in familiar poses with a commentary twist.
This piece, a representation of the damage done to the reputation of Facebook in the light of recent scandals, brilliantly portrays the difficulties facing the company. I don’t know if it is intentional or not, but as if to rub salt into the wound, Quick has added his Twitter and Instagram account details at the bottom of the piece in the corporate colour of Facebook. Hah!
It is not only the witty content of his work that I am attracted to but it is the brilliant technical approach to his multi-layered pieces that amazes. He posts a lot of videos and pictures of his pieces in production on his website, Splintered Studios, and I thoroughly recommend a visit. All good.
It has been a while since I last took a trip to Raleigh Road, and similarly I haven’t posted anything by Rusk for a while, so here is a piece by Rusk in Raleigh Road. The building work behind these hoardings is moving on at pace, so this spot is on borrowed time, but for the time being it still serves as a great gallery for Bristol artists.
I have always taken a liking to Rusk’s writing, largely because of his perfectionist approach and desire to turn out high quality work. This particular piece incorporates a horizontal colour gradation that he favours in much of his work, with a strong, bright white accent line running through the middle of the piece. The interlocking letters, decorations and colour palette work well together. Another fine piece from this gentle artist.
This gorgeous piece by Olivier Roubieu was definitely a hit with critics and visitors to Upfest 2017, receiving a lot ov coverage immediately after the event. It is a classy sophisticated piece beautifully painted, and something quite unusual for the walls of Bristol.
I note from his excellent website that Olivier Roubieu paints a lot of nudes, and I wonder if he toned this piece down for the conservative British audience. In general, it is rare to see nudes in street art in the UK and yet, it seems to be quite common on the continent. I don’t really know what is at the root of it – is it the people or the authorities?
The dancers caught in an instant are full of movement and poise and stand out from the ethrial background ‘noise’. Difficult to believe that this has been created with spray cans. A fabulous contributiion to Upfest 2017.