Life is full of surprises, which on balance is a fantastic thing, and finding this piece by SPZero76, which had been so totally off my radar, was a joyful moment. This is a part of town I rarely visit and I was passing through between two spots that I more regularly visit. This piece has a ‘sister’ which I will post in due course.
This pirate scene is on the wall of the Seven Stars Inn, adjacent to the music venue The Fleece. I think SPZero76 probably has an arrangement with the landlord, because on Google maps, there is a different piece by him here. These pirates follow a sort of convention that the artist likes to paint, with a combination of human characters and part-mechanised characters. It is a theme he returns to again and again. The execution as ever is spectacular. A good find.
It was those damn shadows cast across the piece from bright sunlight passing through leafy trees. That is why I never posted this magnificent wall from SPZero76. It is not the first time and it won’t be the last time that I have struggled with this wall. Having said that, I usually manage to get back and take a picture on a dull day, regrettably not on this occasion.
SPZero76 has an arrangement with the owners of the wall where he decorates it for them and they pay for the paint. Not a bad arrangement really. This piece from 2017 is painted entirely in three or four tones, and looks a lot like the artist’s sketches that he churns out regularly.
Painted in the pre-EAT era (the collaborative partnership with Kid Crayon) this is a solo piece with all the wonderful detail we expect from SPZero76. The Ancient Egyptian inspired scene includes figures that appear to be a fusion of people with robots, a favourite theme used by SPZero76.
I am always completely baffled by the fine detail detail that he manages to incorporate into his work and I am happy at last to share it with you after so long under wraps.
I am beginning to form the opinion that EAT crew are becoming something of a collaborative force in Bristol. EAT are of course SPZero76 and Kid Crayon and the pairing, whose styles are light years apart, seem to be able to create great work together like these two characters playing conkers (remember that?).
SPZero76 is an extraordinary character artist and has an amazing ability to create an insane amount of detail in his pieces, and his style is quite sharp and pointy, if that makes any sense at all.
On the other hand, Kid Crayon has a much softer style with plenty of curves and roundness about it. Stitch the two together and you have a complementary mix that somehow works very well indeed, better than you might expect.
Kid Crayon, in particular has been very busy this year already, and that is music to my eyes, because he pretty much tops my list of Bristol artists and I have been enjoying watching him grow as an artist over the last six years or so.
In addition to the fabulous collaboration, these two have signed the piece by commandeering a waste bin and leaving two little self-portraits. Creative, imaginative and fun. Looking forward to seeing more eat collabs in 2020.
Roughly every six months or so this wall on the side of Domestic Drain Services gets a makeover. It is not a commission as such, more like permission and the cost of the paint thrown in, the payback is that the company get a beautifully sprayed landmark that can just about be seen from this busy motorway junction.
This piece is a collaboration between SPzero76, Squirl and Kid Crayon.
On the left is the highly detailed work of SPZero76 full of busy action and cartoon capers. The words ‘Lost Eats’ on the side of the rocket is a conflation of two crews, the Lost Souls, which SPZero76 and Squirl belong to and Eats which is the pairing of SPZero76 and Kid Crayon. A nice touch.
The central part of the collaboration is a much more tranquil almost abstract space idea going on from Squirl. I have seen a little bit of his work on his occasional visits to Bristol for Upfest so it was nice to see this contribution from him.
Finally, on the right is a rather splendid space woman alien kind of thing with the astronaut clad in terrestrial clothes holding the earth with a little space shuttle breaking through the atmosphere. Great, imaginative stuff.
This whole collaboration seems to have the brief of space, but beyond that each artist has absolutely done his own thing, so this is a three-way individual collaboration loosely based on a single idea.
It is great to see yet another EAT crew piece on this exclusive wall on the side of Domestic Drain Services. Their last piece has been over sprayed in what feels like the blink of an eye because it had suffered from being getting rasined on, and the paint had not stuck to the wall leaving behind a bit of a mess (one that I liked incidentally, but there we go).
EAT are of course SPZero76 and Kid Crayon who have formed a joyous partnership bringing together their contrasting styles in a seemingly effortless way. SPZero76 has a sharp clean and highly detailed style and Kid Crayon a much softer, rounded and organic style, each one exemplified by the writing in the middle of the piece.
On the left of the collaboration are a couple of characters chilling out to some music and using some spray paint – SPZero76 has replaced the ’94’ on the spray can with a ’76’. I am guessing that the 76 in SPZero’s name relates to the year of his birth, it would kind of make sense.
On the right is a character (is it a self-portrait?) also spraying and in his rucksack along with his roller and spray can is a fish. I do very much like Kid Crayon’s obsession with fish…it is something I can relate to. All in all this is a fun piece and more than makes up for the loss of its predecessor.
This is a piece that passed me by in many ways. I hadn’t been aware of it on social media and only found it on a recent mission to seek out the Muckrock piece at the far end of North Street. In fact I had walked straight past it, and only saw it on my return. What a treat.
This is a large commission by SPZero76 at Beaver Electrical on North Street and is a scene that conflates all sorts of ideas, with a robot, a Samurai warrior, A tiger/robot and some ladies and in the centre of it all a paddle boat/junk sort of thing.
I am sure there is a wonderful story to all of this, but I expect it resides in SPZero’s mind and we can just sit back and admire the whole thing. To round it all off and as a little nod to the owners of the store, SPZero76 has added some beavers at the bottom right corner of the work.
All in all this is a magnificent piece with so much to look at. A real treat for anyone strolling through this part of Bedminster – just remember to look behind you in case you walk past it.
When Kid Crayon and SPZero76 get together as ‘EAT’ crew, there is almost always a creative explosion that follows. This brilliant piece, which is a kind of quasi commission, they get paid in paint, is on a wall favoured by these two.
The theme for the piece highlights plastic in our seas, something that thankfully is front of mind for so many of us at the moment. In Kid Crayon’s side of the piece, the king and queen of the sea look less than impressed with the amount of plastic in their domain, and the fish look pretty troubled too.
Although the styles of these two artists are strikingly different, they seem to work well together. SPZero76 gives us a couple of characters, a robot and swimmer in highly protective gear venturing out into the polluted sea for a surf. What is really clever about this piece is that they have incorporated bits of their previous work on this wall, such as the yellow VW Beetle, by leaving them partially exposed, thus becoming part of the pollution in this piece. Really clever work.
I always love a piece with a big story.
Update – I have since found out that the ‘special effect’ was not intentional but rather rain damage. The piece has been replaced already by the EAT crew.
Here’s another EAT crew (SPZero76 and Kid Crayon) collaboration on the side wall of Domestic Drain Services. Maybe once or twice a year, this company invites artists to paint the walls in return for free paint – or so I understand.
One wall was painted by Paul Monsters and featured on this blog a little while ago. This wall has been crafted into a comic strip which was described by Keith Hopewell, AKA SPZero76 on his Instagram account as follows:
‘This comic tells the tale of a race to find the Holy Grail in a post apocolyptic giant robot wasteland. Biker woman vs the pigs of doom (and their herder). Who will find the treasure first?’
The biker woman and robot wasteland are by SPZero76 and the pigs and their hereder by Kid Crayon. I still find this pairing of artists a little unusual, because their styles are so different, but somehow they pull it off every time they work together.
I particularly like the book end characters – Biker woman and the pig herder who reminds me a little of Woody or Andy his owner from Toy Story. The whole piece is crazy, imaginative and inspiring. I love it when these two get together, you just never know what will happen.
This is a small section of a larger wall which was sprayed by the Lost Souls crew for Upfest 2017. The concept for this wall was for each of the artists to produce a kind of playing card with a character piece on it. Here we have a pairing of SPZero76 and Squirl.
SPZero76 has created an incredible skeleton figure, rather disturbingly holding a whole bunch of lollies and sweets. It would seem that he enjoys using these blues and purples in his work, as I have seen them in many many of his pieces.
The Squirl piece is also a skeleton but of something altogether different…a horse maybe or perhaps a dog (see the flying bones) but the dentition is all wrong. What is it with street artists and death? The horse/dog is interacting with the female skeleton, maybe he wants the sweets.
Both of these pieces combine well and are technically beautifully sprayed. More from the Lost Souls to come.
I was very fond of the Andrew Burns Colwill piece that was previously on this container in Anchor Road, but I have to say that this vibrant ‘Welcome to Bristol’ mural by SPZero76 is an absolute gem.
What a lovely welcome, and I guess the topic might have something to do with the location of the Bristol tour bus that runs from nearby. The artwork shows a rather pimped boat surging through the mine-infested waters of Bristol harbour, with the M Shed and distinctive cranes in the background.
Of course no SPZero76 piece would be complete without his lovable and slightly unhinged dog, or in this case two dogs. The execution of the piece is absolutely first class, so clean and tidy, but what makes the whole thing is the frenetic humour and little details to study. A tip top piece.