Over the Christmas break I decided to spend a bit of time trawling through my archives of 2018, to see if I might have missed some pieces that deserve a post. This piece by Khoi had been overlooked, probably because I am not familiar with the artist, and rarely see his/her work.
I am guessing that Khoi is an occasional visitor to Bristol, because the artist’s pieces are few and far between, or maybe they are just an occasional writer. This piece was created in January last year and was part of a paint jam with Sled One and Corupt. There is something unusual and rather compelling about the piece, and while perhaps not to everyone’s taste it does have a charm to it.
OK, so I am going to take you on a bit of journey over the next few posts back to earlier in the year. Somehow these pieces got left behind (and there are many more where they came from), but now is as good a time to share them as any.
This is a van with a 3Dom piece on it, which I didn’t recognise at first as one of his until I saw the signature. It is always nice to see street art on vehicles, because the chance of seeing it is so much more remote than on static walls. I normally associate 3Dom with his surreal characters, but his writing is equally masterful and this is a great bit of mobile work.
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.