One of the most consistent Bristol graffiti writers (plus characters) of 2020 was Taboo, whose imaginative and unconventional creations brightened up walls all over the city. Although not to everyone’s taste, his unique style and obvious (underplayed) talent brought us a succession of notable and humorous pieces.
This one in St Werburghs tunnel takes us deep into his root style of oddly shaped letters (spelling TABOO), his favourite pink and black colours and a sense of anarchy that I really like. I had to auto-fix the colours on Photoshop for this one, without which the whole thing looked yellow from the horrible lighting in the tunnel.
The year is yet young, but already I have seen a feast of outstanding individual works and collaborations in Bristol – I am beginning to think this might be a great year for street art switching up a level. This amazing collaboration between Dasco and Oseque is a great example of the quality of work on display.
On the left, the writing from Dasco is simply sublime. I can’t believe that I have only recently registered his work, and must go through my archives to see if I can unearth some of his older stuff. Everything here is sheer perfection from the rectangular frame to the design, carefully considered shades and tones to the sensational execution. This is as good a piece of writing that I have seen so far this year, and probably a lot longer.
I am not familiar with the work of Oseque, and I am not sure, but I think he might be visiting. I know that there is a new collaboration from these two in Dean Lane, but I just haven’t had time to go and take a gander. Maybe tomorrow. In the meantime just feast your eyes on this beauty – it is amazinng how a piece like this on a grubby wall in St Werburghs tunnel can look like the very best of canvasses in a studio or gallery. Even the graffiti beneath the protrait seeping through seems to add to the quality of the piece overall. Magnificent work.
Wow, I love it when Sled One just pitches up unannounced and then modestly produces his magic like he did in this most recent example in St Werburghs tunnel. The piece features an octopus (what is it about street art and octopi?) sporting a bucket hat and fondly embracing an umbrella, possibly a little too fondly.
There is a lot of perspective and movement in the piece, something that Sled One does so well, and he is a master at creating textures and depth with the use of shading. This is yet another crazy (in a good way) piece from the artist, and made all the more remarkable by the fact that he had a fractured wrist and ankle at the time of painting this, a week or so ago. Just brilliant.
Tireless is the way I would describe the efforts of Face 1st. He seems to paint year-round, regular as clockwork, mainly in the north Bristol spots. Her we have a recent piece of graffiti writing in the St Werburghs tunnel, which has been something of a refuge for artists in the diabolical weather we have experienced since October.
This piece reverts to the old-school style from Face 1st which shows a girl’s face with a FACE hairdo. It has been truly wonderful watching Face 1st switch it up this year, with a really broad range of pieces and some great experimentation. Looking forward to what 2020 will bring from him… no pressure there then.
Another orange piece in the orange setting of St Werburghs tunnel, this time from ‘Mr consistency’ Rusk. As I would expect from the artist this is a beautifully worked and tight piece that probably disguises the effort put in, as I know that Rusk is something of a perfectionist.
I particularly like the way the wavy fill in the bottom half of the letters is continuous despite the breaks, demonstrating some great ‘cutting in’ technique. In recent weeks Rusk seems to have favoured the tunnel – perhaps something to do with the dismal wet weather we have been having.
One of the most welcome sights on any wall in Bristol has to be the beautiful form and colours of a Tasha Bee stylised face. Distinctive and full of serene character, her work, to me at least, feels like it is very ‘Bristol’ if that makes any sense at all, even though I think, like me, Tasha Bee is not a native Bristolian.
It would be easy just to focus on the face of this piece at the entrance to St Werburghs tunnel, but that would ignore the fine hair ornament with joyful colours radiating out from a central circle. Unfortunately the piece had been tagged by the time I got to see it… I just don’t understand the point of tagging something as beautiful as this, is it some kind of assertion of dominance from people who are natural undear-achievers? It is difficult to know.
It is good to see that Mr Draws is getting out a bit more again after a comparatively quiet period. This rather low-key piece in St Werburghs tunnel is a nice take on his DRAW lettering, with a reversal of the letter D. This is quite a common effect used by writers but is always fun and effective.
Rather strangely, the subtle colours used here by Mr Draws come out better in my photographs than some of the other more vibrant adjacent pieces. Usually the poor lighting in the tunnel brings out a lot of amber and orange colours, but this piece is mercifully spared from that fate. Mr Draws would seem to be enjoying his wobbly white outline, which he has used in several of his more recent pieces and is rather effective. I guess that getting a good wobbly line is probably as difficult as getting a good straight line.
A view of St Werburghs tunnel that I haven’t shared before, seen from the city farm end. The entrance to the tunnel is guarded by a pair of ‘monolithic’ gurning faces by Atchue, one on either side.
I haven’t seen much from Atchue lately, so to be presented with these two-for-the-price-of-one faces is definitely a bit of a bonus. On the left is one of his more familiar pink pieces, but the one on the right is in magnificent chrome.
The chrome face appears to be in mid gurn and you can almost hear him making a groaning noise. A lovely idea executed brilliantly by Atchue.
It has been rather a long time since I saw anything from Eraze. There was a period when he used to do the odd piece in Dean Lane, but I can’t recall anything there for ages, so it was a nice surprise to see this in St Werburghs tunnel recently.
I am more familiar with his character pieces, but this is a fine bit of writing with bright colours on a black background. I rather like the white edging and the way it cuts into the letters. Altogether a rather uplifting and happy piece.
This was one of so many pieces created during a paint-jam in St Werburghs tunnel a couple of weeks ago. Happily I can report that they are all still there, but with the turnover in the tunnel being quite high I expect that they won’d last much longer. This piece is by Rusk, a RAW stalwart.
I must confess to being slightly troubled by this piece, because there is something about it that just isn’t quite right for me. I hold Rusk in very high regard indeed and in fact in my view he is the most conscientious graffiti writer I have met. I think my problem (and I am really nit-picking here) is with the grey lines across the bottom of the letters, they just don’t appear to match up across the piece. Having said that, I am using Rusk’s own work as a very high benchmark against which to measure. It would take me a hundred years to get this good.