Wow, just wow, another wonderful paste up from Tian down in Stokes Croft. This one features a boxer, but I fear I don’t know which one. I have Googled Muhammad Ali, it might be him; Apollo Creed, it’s not him; Joe Foreman, it might be him when he had hair; Joe Frazier, I don’t think it’s him. And there my knowledge of boxers dries up… any ideas?
The wheatpaste itself is a beautiful stencil using his preferred yellow/sepia tones, I just don’t think I can get enough of his work and rather joyfully I have a whole load more to post over the coming weeks.
Back to Bristol now, after a short excursion to London, and a more familiar street art scene altogether. This is the second of two recent finds by John D’oh in Horfield skate park. I suppose it is possible that they were produced around the same time.
This stencil features Batman and a quote from John D’oh that reads ‘I son’t want Michael Gove as Prime Minister I want Batman AKA Jeremy Corbyn’. This is in reference to a televised speech made by Michael Gove in which the automated subtitles said Batman instead of ‘that man’ when he was talking about the leader of the opposition. Very funny really, and great work from John D’oh to capture it in this way. I think we’d all prefer Batman to any of the potential candidates in the Tory party right now. What an utter shower of toxic right-wingers.
Sometimes you need to be eagle-eyed. Many of you will be familiar with the work of French artist C215 (Christian Guemy) and will have seen pieces by him in Paris or London, or indeed all over Europe. It is his cats in particular that he is really well known for and here is a rather old looking and very small C215 cat in Brick Lane.
This one was so very well ‘camouflaged’ by all the other busy scrawls on the door that if I had blinked I would have missed it. His work has such a deft touch that brings his pieces to life. I am amazed that in such a small two-tone piece, the character of the cat comes shining through. A brilliantly talented artist.
I don’t head up to Horfield skate park very often, as I consider the turnover of street art and graffiti there to be pretty low and it doesn’t seem to be a particularly favoured spot for many artists. I was delighted therefore to be rewarded on a rare trip on Good Friday with this magnificent stencil by John D’oh.
The stencil works for me so very very well. It shows the unspeakably toxic Jacob Rees-Mogg standing behind Theresa May who appears to be his ventriloquist’s dummy. Brilliantly funny but also it speaks volumes about how so many of us feel about the way the European Research Group (ERG – what kind of name is that anyway? Research? swap the word ‘research’ for ‘hating’ and you might get a sense of what they’re all about) have been holding May hostage throughout Brexit negotiations. Their hard-line and uncompromising Brexit desires, and her determination to hold the Conservative party together, mean that they have dictated the terms of the failed negotiations, along with the jaw-droppingly selfish DUP.
Rees-Mogg represents everything I dislike about self-interested politicians who do not serve their people, but rather manipulate narratives that appeal to under-represented groups. I would guess he also cares more about his income security (and growth) than he does about the pressing fate of our planet. I suspect he shares Owen Patterson’s loathing of the environmental movement that might, just might, interfere with their comfortable lives for the sake of trying to reverse the shocking state of carbon emissions and biodiversity loss.
Thank you John D’oh for giving us this fabulous visual reminder of just how disgraceful the political class (and indeed party politics in general) are in the UK.
I took a walk with my sister, who lives in London, a week ago and on her suggestion we headed over towards Brick Lane. On the way there we passed this wonderful stencil by Unify, which definitely met with her approval. There is something rather special about doorway art… perhaps it is the combination of two of my loves – street art and doors.
In my view, there is something a little sad about this chimpanzee who has sprayed ‘I Love You’ on the door, as if completely misunderstood and marginalised and yet still articulating love. We humans have done just about our worst when it comes to the fragile ecosystems where our great primates live but they bear us no grudges… that would be a human quality.
I love Unify’s work, but find that it is often tinged with a little sadness.
I have a feeling that I may have walked past this piece once or twice before I actually found it. I first saw it on Instagram and noticed that it was in Bristol, but it was impossible to work out where, so I asked the photographer, and he said it was in Leonard Lane. Even then it was difficult to find as it is rather well camouflaged with its surroundings.
The stencil of Yoda is by Cartoonneros and I am guessing that he must have done it during the same visit he made when he sprayed the excellent Kurt Cobain stencil in Dean Lane skate park. This is a fine addition to the vibrant and ecclectic array of graffii and street art in Leonard Lane. Who doesn’t love a Star Wars stencil?
I have been writing about and photographing Bristol street art for about four years now, and I suppose I like to think that I know quite a lot about the contemporary scene. Now when you talk to people about Bristol and street art or graffiti, the conversation pretty much always starts like this:
“oh, Banksy, he is from Bristol isn’t he?”
To which I reply
“yes he is, but there are a whole ton of brilliant and talented street artists in Bristol who are not Banksy”
Generally the point I am making when I do this is that Bristol is not a ‘one trick pony’, and that 99.9% of the street art in Bristol is not by Banksy, “come and take a look at the vast array of talent on offer”. Some shrug their shoulders “m’eh” they say and look for some other iconic brand to schmooze with. Others open their eyes and enter into the secret garden that is Bristol street art. Welcome.
I didn’t even know about this Banksy piece until about a fortnight ago, and found it while I was fannying about on Google streetview. What this goes to show is that I have so much more to learn, and I am open to that, completely. The piece is called Rose Trap and must be quite old. It is protected by a piece of Perspex and sited outside a residential back gate, such an inauspicious place.
The piece is so typically mischievous, as you’d expect from Banksy. I know little of the history of this little gem, but I expect there is quite a lot of information about it on the Interweb.
Finding this treasure is one of the little perks of this hobby (is it a hobby or an obsession? Is there something in between that sounds a little more cerebral?). Banksy.