The most common phrase I have used when writing about the work of Face 1st is “I will never tire of the work of Face 1st” and that phrase is as true now as it ever has been. Big or small, throw up or intricate piece, it just doesn’t matter, his art chimes for me, and he and those like him, are the engine room of Bristol graffiti art.
The new(ish) ramps at the M32 Spot are proving to be quite a fertile ‘canvass’ for our artists and Face 1st has painted this back board with one of his characteristic winking girls with hair made up of FACE. I love everything about this. There is an element of Marine Boy anime in those eyes.
in writing that last sentence I got distracted by Marine Boy. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, take a trip down memory Lane with typing Marine Boy into YouTube. Enjoy.
You may recall a giant skeleton by Risco that I published on Natural Adventures a few days ago, well here is another of his rather large pieces, but this time not on a ceiling. The M32 skate spot has had something of a rebirth since the arrival of the pandemic. There have been some new DIY ramps installed and there is a buzz about the place. It also feels like there is more activity on the graffiti/street art front.
This is another amazing skeleton piece, although exactly what creature it is I am not too sure (imaginary I think). Risco has worked the piece beautifully along the length of the ramp, with the rib cage bulging out from the wall. Another epic piece from this artist who is smashing it at the moment.
A rather sweet pair of cuddly rabbits squeezed onto a small wall under the large ramp at Dean Lane skate park by none other than Nevergiveup or Followmyrabbits. Natural Adventures wouldn’t be Natural Adventures without regular posts containing these ubiquitous bunnies.
This pairing looks like a rather quick piece from Nevergiveup and I am guessing that it didn’t take too long, such is his expertise at creating these little characters. I suspect it was a quick one because the decoration is a little less elaborate than we have been used to of late. This wall gets tagged and dogged really quickly, so turnover here is very high. Nothing lasts long here, not even rabbits.
Well, here is something a little different from Nightwayss down at the M32 Spot. One of the columns transporting us to a warm skateboarding scene, an appropriate piece for this spot which is a DIY wet-weather skate park.
These columns are such a difficult place to paint a meaningful story, but Nightwayss does it with great skill and assurance, and just for good measure he includes one of his monkeys (as if he wouldn’t). This is a refreshing and wonderful piece from this prolific Bristol artist.
I recently took a trip (mainly to give the dog somewhere different to experience) to Weston-super-Mare, and it hadn’t changed much from the last time I visited a couple of years back. What I was able to do however was explore the town for JPS street art, and naturally this is the place to do it.
In my view, JPS doesn’t come to Bristol nearly enough, but WSM is his manor and that is where so much of his work is. I think this piece of a youing skateboarder is reasonably recent, but I have no real way of knowing. I understand that JPS now lives in Bavaria, but I am sure that he returns now and again to his old stomping ground.
This piece, like all of his stencils is beautifully intricate and has been specifically placed to give the impression that the child is skating over the street sign. This is just the first of many posts I will be bringing to Natural Adventures over the coming days/months from WSM featuring JPS, Fawn and PZY.
Discovering St George skate park has been something of a revelation for me. I knew of its existence, but just never bothered to find it, that is until recently. I guess that there is a challenge for artists and ‘hunters’ alike as certain areas become gentrified such as the Carriageworks and others get closed down to artists altogether, like The Bearpit, new areas become more attractive and I think St George is one of those.
This is a really jolly collaboration between Fiva (Fiver) and Nightwayss on one of the ramps in the skate park. Fiva gives us some straightforward block letters with a white fill and black dots, set on a black background with white dots. Yet another fine Fiva piece.
Tucked away to the right hand side of Fiva’s work is a brilliant little story of a naughty monkey playing with a box of matches by Nightwayss. This is an engaging piece that just seems to blend in with the concrete so well and almost has a 3D effect where it looks like the monkey might just decide to wander off at any minute.
Personally I think this is one of Nightwayss’ best pieces, not so much in the artwork, but more in the narrative. A pocket-sized piece that has enough detail and credibility to feel almost real. I love this a lot. I’m beginning to think that a Nightwayss gallery might be on the cards before too long. Watch this space.
The M32 Spot is an interesting location. It is sited under an elevated section of the M32, the main artery into Bristol from the M4 motorway. There is a DIY skatepark which is used by skateboarders, predominantly when it is wet (a barrier to skating), but most of the time is fairly quiet. It is also a bit of a graffiti/street art hotspot.
In addition to the skatepark, there is a fenced-off area through which a concreted section of the River Frome is channelled via a culvert under the city and which eventually discharges into the New Cut. I have never quite worked out how to get over the fence to this section of concrete, unlike many graffiti/street artists who have plastered the walls with their work, so my pictures a limited to long-distance shots like this one through the fence railings.
It is a pity that this collaboration between Stupid Stupid Meathole and Panskaribas is so inaccessible, because it really deserves to be seen by more people than the very few who would bother to look here.
The piece features one of Stupid Stupid Meathole’s grotesque worms, this one with two heads, looking like it is being ridden by a couple of Panskaribas’s characters. The whole thing is badged as a Reseau collaboration, and it is possible that there is a third artist involved (the boxes) but I am not sure. I’ve yet to meet these artists, but it is only a matter of time I guess. What would we do without zoom lenses?
I haven’t posted much by Tasha Bee lately, not because she hasn’t been painting, but more because I haven’t been able to get out much over the past fortnight. This one is under the M32 in the wet-weather DIY skate park, known as the M32 Spot.
Sprayed on one of the ramps rather than on a wall, this is another of her calm, soulful trademark figures with beautifully decorated hair. Recently she has been working or her writing which from the Instagram shots I have seen is really exciting. Unfortunately I’ve not seen any yet… it’s a turnover thing.
I can honestly say that the artist who most represents Bristol and its youth culture for me is Silent Hobo. With consummate ease he seems to be able to switch seamlessly between commissions and ‘legal’ walls, between indoor and outdoor work, all the time seeing the good in others.
This wonderful column piece is one of a few that he has done at the M32 spot, an area where skaters like to gather when it is raining, and where DIY Bristol have created a great skating area under cover of the motorway. This youth reflects all those who gather here, clutching his beat box (what I would call a boogie box) and sporting a beanie. I love the serenity of the piece.
Each year in August there is an event held in Dean Lane skate park called DLH, or Dean Lane Hardcore. It is a fairly crazy affair with skaters, wild music and a lot of booze. Before the event, streetartists come down and do a bit of decorating on the ramps and walls, which ends up looking pretty good on the videos.
For at least the last two years, and probably longer than that, Feek has taken on the large ramp at the bottom of the park and given it an extreme makeover. I made it to Dean Lane while he was working on the piece, but he disappeared and I never got to meet him which is a pity.
The monster glaring out of the ramp is brilliantly done and suits the event perfectly his previous years piece was not dissimilar. All good work. Unfortunately, I think this year’s DLH was a bit of a wash out…you can’t skate in the rain.