It seems somewhat remarkable that so many Soker pieces have been left behind in my archive over the last few years, but on the upside, it means I can share them with you now, while there is something of a slowdown with the appearance of new work in Bristol at the moment. I feel that things might be about to change however, with a slight relaxation of lock down.
This is a stunninng, crisp, clean and very easy on the eye piece of writing from Soker on a hoarding that sadly no longer exists. A beautiful design, great colour selection and fabulous 3D shadow that lifts the piece from the background all add up to piece of the highest quality from this master graffiti writer.
This long piece is a bit of a monster and unusually garish for Soker. It has the appearance of a huge washing up session with the grimey green slime getting a bit of a clean up from the bubbly water. The SOKER will come clean.
Painted in February last year, the piece would have been one of the last to appear on this particular wall, because not long after the hoardings were removed and the block of flats inhabited. Previously the empty lot had been a wonderful spot and was used every year by Upfest. Another loss to the Bristol street art community, but at least the housing provided looks like it was appropriately affordable.
Figuring this one out might be a challenge for those unfamiliar with Bristol artists, because the word VODKA might have little meaning and certainly isn’t a name we see here. Regular readers will all have seen an awful lot of work by this artist in Natural Adventures and so might be familiar with the letter shapes and style.
It is of course by Soker and a gentle nod to artist Vodka (@ren_jeffys). It is a beautifully conceived and executed piece down on the M32 roundabout. Soker has been on fire over the last month or so – it will be interesting to see if he continues as the Coronavirus restrictions grow.
From the feature image it is difficult to gauge the significance of this collaborative wall from little more than a week ago in Dean Lane skate park. I gave you a little hint earlier this week with a piece by Rusk which is on the left hand side of this wall behind the fence and which can’t be viewed from this vantage point.
I had decided to take the dog for a walk to Dean Lane and talk about being in the right place at the right time… this was it, and so utterly random that I had chosen to go down there. Not only were Soker, Inkie and Hemper busy doing their thing, but Rusk was also there and watching on were The Agent, Angus, DJ Perks and Tes (Slim Pickings).
It was a little bit like I had died and gone to graffiti heaven. To see these established writers all at work simultaneously was a rare treat indeed, and that other artists who had been tipped-off were watching on made the whole thing feel extra special.
I had met all the artists before with the exception of Hemper who seems to have had something of a renaissance of late, but this wasn’t really the right time to introduce myself, more an opportunity to watch how these guys go about their businness.
Soker’s chrome piece on the left is near perfect and spells out Sokem (the R and M are interchangeable in his name). The photographs of the finished pieces were taken a day or two later.
Inkie’s central panel is classic Inkie and whilst also in chrome stands out due to the deep 3D shading in a striking scarlet colour. This is the third Inkie I have seen so far this year which is not bad going especially as there haven’t been any festivals in that time.
I am less well acquainted with Hemper’s work simply because he hasn’t painted as much as the others until relatively recently. Again in chrome, this third panel of the triptych mirrors the colours of Soker’s piece on the left to give some symmetry to the collaborative work. A landmark wall and a red letter day.
I’m not sure I would have known that this ‘Blistolian’ piece was by Soker if I hadn’t seen it tagged on Instagram, although it does have all the hallmarks of a highly accomplished artist and was painted alongside a Hemper pece so was likely to be by one of the big boys of Bristol street art.
It seems that Soker has ‘awoken’ from a fairly quiet winter period on the streets, with a couple of new works including this one. It is unusual for Soker to write something other than his name, but it does happen from time to time and the script fot used in this one is an absolute winner.
Aah! the familiar large letters with deep 3D shading of Bristol’s mighty Soker. It doesn’t seem to matter what design, shapes or colours Soker uses, his supreme qulaity always shines through. I cant’t fully identify what it is that makes a piece stand out from the crowd, but it might have something to do with the assured skill and confidence that the artist embeds into the work at the time of spraying.
I aven’t seen too much from Soker over the winter months – perhaps he is more of a fair-weather artist or maybe he has been busy with other projects, either way, it is always a pleasure to see anything by him.
This wall at the back of Sofa Project has played host to some of the tightest street art in Bristol, and it is most pleasing to see that tradition continuing with this new collaboration between Paul Monsters and Soker.
when I spoke to Paul Monsters about it, he was full of compliments for his collaboration partner and explained how Soker had worked the horizontal shade in his writing to match up with Paul’s geometric design with complete ease. Looking at it knowing this adds context and insight into the strength and thoughtfulness of this piece.
The geometric backdrop by Paul Monsters is in my view masterful work and creates a most extraordinary illusion that the wall is made of coloured blocks that have bevelled peaks that jut out, and no matter how hard you look at it it is difficult to see it as flat.
Genuinely, this is one of the most enjoyable collaborations I have seen in quite a while. Classy and diverse.