1076. The Bearpit (97)

One of the classiest pieces in The Bearpit for a little while appeared just over a week ago and took up the entire length of ont of the north side entrance ramp. This stunning piece is a collaboration between Sled One and Epok. As is often the case with work like this, the photographs really don’t do it justice and I would urge Bristolians to get down to The Bearpit to see it for themselves.

Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017
Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017

There is a strong message here about the damage being done to our oceans by plastics – don’t get me going on this subject, because it vexes me because the torrent of pastic, large and microscopic, will kill off life in our oceans unless urgent action is taken. We sure know how to goof up our planet.

Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017
Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017

The artwork in this piece is exquisite and incredibly detailed, just take a look at the pectoral fins of the fish above, to see how much work has gone into the colourse ripples and folds of the fins.

Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017
Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017

Them whole thing is cleverly constructed, combining some abstract elements with life studies, but the whole effect is one of movement and swirling currents.

Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017
Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017

It would be great to hear from the artists themselves what inspired them to do this piece. It is possible that it was a commission, but by whom I wonder. Next time I see Sled One, I’ll have to ask him.

Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017
Sled One and Epok, The Bearpit, Bristol, October 2017

All in all a great piece and beautiful gift to the people of Bristol. Now, reduce that plastic waste!

Advertisements

1075. Greville Road (7)

I am struggling a little about how to categorize this piece. It is by Sonic Oner, whose official Upfest piece I posted a little while back, but I think that this appeared a few days later, and so I am not classifying it as an Upfest piece, preferring to think of it as an extra gift to Bristol.

Soniconer, Greville Road, Bristol, July 2017
Soniconer, Greville Road, Bristol, July 2017

Located on a wall outside the Hen and Chicken, the piece is in great company, being next to a Pelmo piece. I love reptile street art, and this Iguana is really rather special. There is a lot of attention to detail in the scales, and the eye is beautifully worked.

Soniconer, Greville Road, Bristol, July 2017
Soniconer, Greville Road, Bristol, July 2017

I think he probably used the spray paints that he had used for his other piece, since the colour scheme is the same; green, white and black. It was a lovely surprise to find this after the main event of Upfest was over.

1074. Upfest 2017 (80)

OK, so this is one of those pieces that seems to have become quite iconic in the wake of Upfest. Everything about it is contemporary with the mood of the nation and other nations. It is bright and colourful but hides a more sinister discontent behind the hoodie and mask. My interpretation, which might be very wrong, is of resistance and revolution, of clawing back some decency, some freedom.

Tysall, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Tysall, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

The piece, by Tysall, is one of the most memorable of the festival, however, I am not familiar with the artist at all. I believe that he is Bristol-based, and have found a rather nice interview with him here.

Tysall, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Tysall, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

I think his entry in the Upfest biographies is one of my favourites:

Just trying to make my own mark… or mess, I’m still not sure which it is.

He has made his mark with me, no messing.

1073. Upfest 2017 (79)

There is a pretty strong and obvious message in this morbidly humorous piece by El.Viz. Smoking makes you sick. I used to smoke quite a lot, but it was imagery like this that helped me to kick the habit almost twenty years ago now. Good thing too.

El.Viz, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
El.Viz, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

El. Viz is an Irish artist working out of Dublin and is a studio artist as well as taking to the streets. I like the following line from his Upfest biography, because it tells you all you might want to know:

Heavily influenced by 80s cartoons and punk rock, he blends lowbrow culture with surreal pop art

And there you have it.

1072. Upfest 2017 (78)

I think that this is a bit of a cheeky Upfest piece from Jee See, a Bristol graffiti artist that I have featured on this blog many times before, and one whose work I particularly like. The suggestion that it is a bit cheeky is because I can’t see his name on the artist list for the festival, and this board was erected outside one of the venues, almost as if it was a bit of a teaser.

Jee See, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Jee See, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

I am guessing that there were a few ‘no shows’ for the festival and that spare boards were available for some local artists. This is all based on my own assumptions, and as I was once told, to assume things is to make an ‘ass of u and me‘.

Anyhow, I am pleased that Jee See managed to present his work and combine his trademark seismic writing alongside a beautiful portrait…all so very Jee See.

1071. Upfest 2017 (77)

This is what you get when two mischievous artists collaborate, each with their own inimitable style. When Chinagirl Tile and Angus got together at Upfest this year, they produced this rather special piece which arguably was the most controversial of the festival, causing offence to some.

Chinagirl Tile and Angus, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017
Chinagirl Tile and Angus, Upfest, Bristol, July 2017

The raccoons are by Chinagirl Tile and the mosaic hand gesture is by Angus. Unfortunately the piece in its original state didn’t last too long at all before it was ‘redacted’ with some black tape.

Chinagirl Tile and Angus, Upfest, Bristol, August 2017
Chinagirl Tile and Angus, Upfest, Bristol, August 2017

Not long after that, the hand was completely replaced by yellow tiles, and the piece has really lost something. I will leave you to judge which version of this you prefer. For my part, this work challenges the ‘sanitised’ art you tend to get at festivals by being provocative and edgy, which is where most street art and graffiti art has its roots. Some really interesting perspectives being played out here.

Chinagirl Tile and Angus, Upfest, Bristol, August 2017
Chinagirl Tile and Angus, Upfest, Bristol, August 2017

I like the original, but I would wouldn’t I.