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Spitalfields – More Than Just Street Art

Street Art needs walls! Whether its Shoreditch or Spitalfields, street art may hang on hoardings, stick to street signs, augment adverts, decorate doors or flourish on flyposters but wondering at walls is the main thing on the Shoreditch Street Art Tour.  Walls beg a secondary purpose (wink) and minds distracted from art may dwell on fortuitous factors such as boundary, division, shelter, protection, property, privacy and possibly even more – where would windows hang if not framed in walls?

We pass a lot of walls on the Shoreditch Street Art Tour and a lot of wondering what lies within and behind those walls occurs.  Today the good people behind the doors of 8 Spitalfields properties invited the world in to see their urban gardens and we were delighted and fascinated.

Close by, Brick Lane teems with colour, noise and life but within these private Spitalfields spaces there is serenity, tranquillity and a sense of calm seclusion.  There is also tremendous inventiveness and creativity in the use of tiny scraps of urban space.  “Nothing but rubble below this paving” said one owner in his back garden; “foundations 5 brick deep” said the owner of another 1740s silk merchant’s property.

All the properties visited lie within the Fournier St and Brick Lane Conservation Area with the exception of the offices of The society For The Protection of Ancient Buildings at,37 Spital Square   which is in the Elder St Conservation Area.  All except one of the properties is Grade II listed.  Whilst fascinated by history, Shoreditch Street Art Tours makes no claim to being historians.  There are some fascinating reads to be found online which provide contest for the historical development of Spitalfields and its properties, such as “The Hugenots Of Spitalfields” website, the Spitalfields Trust  and the Spitalfields Neighbourhood Planning Forum website

The Spitalfields gardens were open as a group as part of the National Garden Scheme open day programme which clearly does great work raising funds for a variety of charities and we are grateful to the residents for opening their doors to provide such a fascinating insight to parts of Spitalfields not normally accessible by the public.

For those of you who explore the outsides with us, here is a collection of photos that is a bit horticulture, a bit architecture, a bit nosy-parker but mostly a record of a nice opportunity to view Spitalfield’s insides, withins and behinds.

All photos: Dave Stuart

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Enigma street art surreal painting of multi part horse and human centaur

Enigma Street Art and a show with friends

A significant amount of Enigma street art, who is one of our favourite street artists, has been spotted over the past few weeks.  A quite wet Shoreditch Street Art Tours party bumped into Enigma the Friday before last who was finding the morning’s rainy conditions and wet wall not conducive to painting but as soon as we arrived, the cloud parted, the sun shone and Enigma was able to complete a stunning centaur, part man part horse.

Enigma street art surreal painting of multi part horse and human centaur

Enigma May 2022

This was the week Enigma opened in a group show at BSMT Space alongside Ed Hicks, Perspicere and Roncho.  This elevates Enigma to the level of some heavyweight artists in a very impressive show.

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Close to BSMT is a stunning collaborative mural painted with Ed Hicks that week.  The dramatic portals and volcanic landscapes Ed has been painting recently have been amazing.  The group show attempts to bind the four artist together on the basis of surrealism, in this street art the fusion of enigma’s heads and skulls with Hick’s fractured portal, a woodland scene and a landscape certainly nods in that direction.

Ed Hicks and Enigma collaboration, Dalston, May 2022

Street art collaboration in Dalston by Ed Hicks and Enigma

Ed Hicks and Enigma collaboration, Dalston, May 2022

Street art collaboration in Dalston by Ed Hicks and Enigma

Ed Hicks and Enigma collaboration, Dalston, May 2022

In Shoreditch that same week our tour troupe turned a corner and instead of an Enigma shadow puppet we found a “Forty winks” graffiti throwie.    Two days later on yet another tour we discovered that Enigma had returned to reclaim the spot with a painting of a study on paper of the human torso with a line element head.  Unpick that one!!

Graffiti over street art in Shoreditch

Forty Winks over Enigma shadow hand

Enigma street art surreal painting of male body with line diagram head

Ed Hicks had painted a diptych “as above so below” in Shoreditch the previous week with  Emma Richardson, a private tour group came upon Ed’s painting the day after it had been created but Emma’s panel had already been totally painted over, such is the mayfly-like existence of street art in Shoreditch.  As I have a photo of only Ed’s half, with thanks and apologies I have taken the liberty pinching Ed’s photo from his Instagram.

Streert collaboration in Shoreditch Ed Hicks and Emma Richardson

Ed Hicks and Emma Richardson: As above so below (Photo Ed Hicks)

Perspicere’s string art was highlighted in our 2021 Street Art review as one of the two forms of innovative street art to appear that year.  Perspicere has remained prolific this year with plenty of new specimens revealing the vague semi solidity of their subjects which is seen more clearly the further one stands from the art.

Perspicere string art in Shoreditch of woman in Niqab

Perspicere – former site of Hitchcock Reel

Perspicere string art in Shoreditch of woman holding a face mask

Perspicere

Perspicere’s string art provokes a high “how is that done” curiosity so has a tendency to deteriorate fairly quickly as people pluck at it, though one of Perspicere’s faces has been the subject of a royal update Butterflyman aka Sellout.  The quizzical smiley face one has been installed high off the ground and its longevity has benefitted from the effort that went into that placement.

Perspicere string art in Shoreditch of woman holding a face mask

Perspicere String Art Smilies

The group show ends this weekend so pop up to BSMT if you have the chance, or if it is all over by the time you read this hopefully a few photos will capture some of the magic.

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Why Enigma didn’t have his usual coat on in the rain 🙂

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Perspicere “Walking Head”, “Chair Head”

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Ed Hicks: Anniversary

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Perspicere detail

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Perspicere Shadowman Watching detail

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Perspicere: Shadowman Watching; Shadowman Tear

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Enigma

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

Roncho

Art in the group show New Surrealism: Ed Hicks Enigma Perspiscere Roncho

The Dialogue, Enigma

All photos Dave Stuart except where stated


Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Cardiff Street Art and Graffiti

Any excuse to blow the London vapours from the lungs will do so my travels recently took me West to explore Cardiff street art and graffiti thanks to a cheap rail ticket promotion.  Cardiff is the capital of Wales and, as a specimen of street art informs me, the 6th most “at risk” city in the world from rising water levels.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Cardiff At Risk – artist unknown

I have previous with Cardiff, having been born there, schooled there and fled from there.  It was a shithole until I left, now look at it!   In the mid 00s when I joined Flickr with its global community of artists, writers and photographers I realised early on that Cardiff has some seriously good spraycan artists, so an art visit was well overdue.  This is not a guide to Cardiff’s street art and graffiti scene, I am certain there is more and there are different artists and other locations.  Think of it as me sharing a snapshot of some of the stuff I happened to find and enjoy on one particular day.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

My Dog Sighs & others

I headed into the area south of the train station, dark streets where we used to drink and play pool in the old Bristol Hotel, drawn in that direction not by an awareness of any art locations, just simple curiosity at a new exit from the train station which I don’t think existed when I was a kid.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

N3KOcardiff trans rights stickers

South of the station there was barely a single building I recognised but one thing they never change are the railway bridges so it was nice to find to rough and raw pieces on those familiar surfaces.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Past Jams

Rmer1, as in “Armour”, stood out in my online remote appreciation of Cardiff’s street art scene, my 150% certainty was that if I did find any Rmer artwork it would be one of his photorealistic portrait pieces.  I was dead pleased when one of the first tags I found was Rmer1.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Hoxe1 Rmer1 Cardiff

That tag was found on Womanby Street, a drag that screams “diehard 18 year old drinkers from the valleys” and most of the art seemed bar related.  There was some good stuff and when you have talent like Dr Zadok combining with Karm and Rmer the result such as this portrait of 2015 Welsh Music Prize 2015 winner Gwenno Saunders is inevitably impressive.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Zadok Karm Rmer

After a delicious humus and felafal sourdough in the indoor market a hired bike took me west the short distance to Sevenoaks Park in Grangetown where I found this enormous RIP tribute to deceased graffiti writer NERVE.  The fragmented blockbuster letter outlines served as a frame within which writers paid their respects in a coordinated colour scheme.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Nerve RIP wall Grangetow

I couldn’t believe my luck in coming across this crisp, clean, colour coordinated graff seemingly painted quite recently given its pristine freshness.  It was quite a surprise when a bit of research revealed it dates back to June 2021, there is absolutely zero chance, almost, of anything lasting that long unscathed up here in London.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Nerve RIP wall detail

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Nerve RIP wall

One writer who’s style caught my eye in that Nerve tribute and a couple of other spots was Elvs.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

ELVS Grangetown Cardiff

TIP: When exploring art in a new town, never take the same road twice.  A different route back to the centre led to the chance find of a long extent of graffed up hoardings on the embankment of the River Taff leading to an entrance to the Rugby stadium.  Rugby fans have to have something to piss against I suppose.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Millenium Stadium Taff Embankment Cardiff

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Newer, Cardiff

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

AMOK Cardiff

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Cesto Cardiff

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Sepr Cardiff

Apart from strange spiky posts covered in furious tags, the pieces on the boards were virtually unblemished with little to no dogging or lining out.  Close inspection of one piece did show evidence of some local beef, lining out had been repaired and the same taking out style deployed against the same writer was observed in several spots across the city.

A longer ride took me through Cardiff’s impressive civic centre towards the Roath area where spectacular murals and cobbled alleyway pieces can be found.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Lowther Keys Dan Green Cardiff

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Helen Bur, Colour Doomed collab Cardiff 2014

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

City Road ish, Cardiff

Familiar artists abound though the art piece that excited me most was a My Dog Sighs painting in support of Ukraine in which the photorealistic eyeball reflection expresses the explosive horror or a Russian missile attack.  My Dog Sigh’s painting went viral on social media in the early weeks of the current conflict.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

My Dog Sighs Ukraine

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

My Dog Sighs

With spring light holding up well a random loop up the side of Roath Park then back west hemmed in by the Western Avenue revealed individual isolated art works are to be found by the vigilant eye.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Alex Pawson

This mural by SPK dating from 2015, survives on a wall which has all the hallmarks of a building extension jerry built on top of an existing garden wall, Boris was a pariah among the righteous even before becoming PM (but you knew that).  It’s the legs of the badger down the badger sett painted where once would have been a garden gate is a use of wall topography that amuses and impresses.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Boris Johnson fox hunt supporter – SPK

It’s the legs of the badger down the badger sett painted where once would have been a garden gate is a use of wall topography that amuses and impresses.

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Boris Johnson fox hunt supporter – SPK

They say one of the first signs of gentrification is street art moving in; I remember this cut-through to the train station opening some 35 or so years ago, seems Cardiff’s street art lags the gentrification :-))

Cardiff street art and graffiti visited by Shoreditch Street Art Tours

Helen Bur / Wasp Elder Collab

This trip to Cardiff was part art, part graffiti and part nostalgia.   Despite no prior research into locations a random exploration of Cardiff yielded a satisfying quantity of art and for that randomness was actually all the more interesting.  We shall return.

 

All photos Dave Stuart


Street art print stop frame animation of a female swinging a large bat by Dr Cream in Shoreditch

Street Art Animations From Dr Cream

NFTs are the current buzzword in the art world and street artists are getting quite excited about their potential for street art.  Street art overlapping the digital realm is nothing new and one of it longest standing exponents is the self-styled guerrilla animator Dr Cream who has been producing street art animations for the past decade.

London, Shoreditch, Street art, tours, Dr Cream, springbot, Spring, linoprint, linocut, animation, stopframe, timelapse, Shoreditch street art tours, paste ups,

Springbot by Dr Cream feat also the Rolling Fool, Cat Rider and Shark Army, 2017

In the famous Star Yard off Brick Lane there is at the moment a lovely collection of paste ups from Dr Cream comprising the full set of frames required to replicate one of his famous street art animations.  You can do this yourself, take a few quick snaps and hey presto with a bit of photoshop   create your own replica of one of Dr Cream’s animations.   Other animation makers may be available.   The Star Yard collection yielded this version of Daisy Riot’s strike.

street art stop frame animation of a female swinging a large bat by Dr Cream in Shoreditch

Daisy Riot Guitar Swat

For years we had failed to locate every necessary frame to make a seamless replica of one of his animation, this changed at the London International Paste Up festival last year when Dr Cream obligingly put all the frames for another Daisy animation.

Paste-ups by street artist Dr Cream used to create a stop Frame animation

Daisy Riot animation frames by Dr Cream

You may wonder why bother with this complex process fusing the real and the virtual when you could just make a wholly digital animation.  There are several great reasons for doing it this way: the fun, the audience but most of all it is the beauty of introducing random chance abstract colours and textures from the street into the animation.

Street art print stop frame animation of a female swinging a large bat by Dr Cream in Shoreditch

Daisy Riot back lift axe

As for NFTs, hey are coming to street art and there will benefits and there will be negatives, maybe we’ll go into that another time.

Check out the long history of Dr Cream’s street art animations HERE

Photos and animations: Dave Stuart


Extraordinary Portrait Painter Dale Grimshaw’s Street Art

Street artist Dale Grimshaw featured in a brilliant BBC programme on TV last night so here is a  profile of Dale’s street art pedigree and a huge recommendation that you to catch up with Dale’s moment of TV glory.

street artist Dale Grimshawpaints colourful eyes in a Free West Papua mural in Shoreditch

Dale Grimshaw work in progress 2019

In the early years, from about 2009 Dale Grimshaw put paste up street art featuring elaborate dynamic portraits.  Motion was a key characteristic, bodies plummeted from the skies, subjects  kicked out at us, heads twisted with dizzying speed.

Street art woodcut print of man spread-eagled in free fall

The Fool, 2009

paste ups by street artist Dale Grimshaw in Shoreditch showing self portrait and raven

Self portrait and raven, 2009

Woodcut print street art of man in short giving a flying kick by Dale Grimshaw

“Falling Kicking” ,woodcut paste up, 2010

Dale’s involvement in the scene extended to running the Signal Gallery in Shoreditch with his partner.  They staged exciting shows by street art luminaries such as Jef Aerosol and C215 and urban art stars including Matt Small and Jaybo, all of whom are predominantly portraiture specialists. Of course there were also several great Grimshaw shows.

C215 art on display at Shoeshiners exhibition, Signal gallery, 2009

C215 Shoeshiners exhibition, Signal Gallery, 2009

Although Dale did paint murals on permission walls right from the off, his distinctive aboriginal portraits emerged in spraypainted mural form about 10 years ago.

multimedia street art painting of man with a snarling dog on a lead by Dale Grimshaw

Who’s taking who for a ride, mixed media, 2009

vibrant colourful street art mural of a tribesman by Dale Grimshaw

2 Worlds, 2013

street art painting of man and eagle by Dale Grimshaw

Man and Eagle, Walthamstow, 2015

vibrant colourful street art mural of a tribesman by Dale Grimshaw

Hanbury St, 2017

Portrait paintings have been an indulgence for rulers, kings, religious icons and rich art patrons with the moolah to immortalise their image through portrait commissions.  Extraordinary Portraits, presented on the BBC by British rapper Tinie Tempah redresses the balance by pairing unsung heroes with artists for a portrait sitting to honour real people and real lives.  For this edition Tinie matches up Dale Grimshaw with Patrick Hutchinson who made the front pages world wide  in 2020 for his selfless rescue of an isolated white BLM “counter protestor” under attack.

White man rescued by Partick Hutchinson at BLM protest, London, photo credit: Dylan Martinez 2020

White man rescued by Partick Hutchinson at BLM protest, London, photo credit: Dylan Martinez 2020

After Dale and Patrick’s initial meeting the programme pursues Dale’s commitment to reveal something deeper than the superficially obvious, they meet Patrick’s family, visit his place of work and then of course there is the grand reveal.   Fascinating sequences unveil Dale’s photography session, his varied and very detailed painting process and his studio environment.   It’s not just about Dale of course, Patrick is an equally heart-warming character and it is quickly apparent that his credentials as a role model for humanity and harmony go way deeper than that one photographed incident.

Dale Grimshaw and Tinie Tempah, Extraordinary Portraits, ; photo: Peter Coventry

What has Dale painted?  Will the family like it?  Track down Extraordinary Portraits Series 1 Episode 3 (link HERE), available on BBC iPlayer until April 2023.  Shoreditch Street Art Tours is a no spoiler zone.

Links:

Dale Grimshaw: instagram

Patrick Hutchinson: instagram

Photos: Dave Stuart except where noted


Solidarity With Ukraine message on colours of Ukraine flag painted on building site hoarding in Shoreditch

Street Art Solidarity With Ukraine

Three days ago Russia invaded Ukraine.  Street artists in Shoreditch have united with the rest of the world in putting out street art with messages of solidarity with Ukraine and revulsion at war breaking out on the European continent.

This afternoon (Sunday 27th February, 2022) these pro Ukraine messages were seen in Shoreditch, shown dovetailed with photographs from protests outside Downing Street in Whitehall, London yesterday.

Street Art in Ukranian flag colours says Peace and Love in Shoreditch London

Peace and Love, our thoughts are with Ukraine

Huge crowd at Whitehall London protesting against Russian invasion of ukraine

Shelter the sky over Ukraine/Block Putin war

Street Art shows Putin on cross bones with message saying Danger To Life

Putin Danger To Life, by Pegasus

Huge crowd in Whitehall, London protesting against Russian invasion of ukraine with Ukrainian flag flying over Downing Street, London

Ukrainian flag flying over Downing Street, London

Street art supports Ukraine and condemns Putin

Solidarity with Ukraine and Putin poison warning

Huge crowd in Whitehall, London protesting against Russian invasion of ukraine

Street artists not known except Pegasus where stated

Street art photos by Dave Stuart

Whitehall photos by anonymous contributor with thanks


Street Artist Enigma In Shoreditch

Just suppose someone decided the missing ingredient in street art was monochromatic medieval woodcut images of public hangings or fantasy horror representations of bizarre sea creatures attacking intrepid seafarers venturing beyond the realm of worldly knowledge.   Japanese street artist Enigma has stepped up to fix this obvious void in Shoreditch’s globally acclaimed street art scene.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma sailing ship and sea serpent

Sea Serpent

Street art has developed to a level of variety and sophistication that it takes something quite special to stand out.  As observed in our look back at Shoreditch street art 2021 favourites, the street art of this new (to us) artist Enigma was a highlight of a rather unusual year It won’t escape your attention that the leviathan serpent traumatising that unstable looking ship above spells out ENGM, a contraction of Enigma’s moniker in a style barely removed from graffiti.  The sea serpent was our first stop-you-in-your-tracks encounter with Enigma’s art last year.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma based on Altas with an origami paper plane

Ready To Fly

A sepia appearance coupled with extensive use of cross hatching lends Enigma’s art an unfashionable antiquated appearance.  Street art is awash with pretty but very average photorealistic portraiture, there is a huge gap for new artists prepared to buck the trend, to not follow fashion.  Enigma’s vision of Lucifer cast out of heaven, based on a detail of Cabanel’s Fallen Angel has butterflies where others paint wavy locks of hair.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma showing a detail copy of Fallen Angel by Alexandre Cabanel

Fallen Angel

Elsewhere faces are sliced to reveal what a proper clockwork orange looks like.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma with a sliced face showing an oragne and clock face so clockwork orange

The Clockwork Orange

Surrealism and distortions suggest an artist enjoying playful imagery and experimentation. How many eyes can you or indeed should you fit on a bowler hatted whale or on a chequered finish flag winged stag beetle?

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma of a surreal whale with a bowler hat and lots of human eyes

Whale Watching

surreal Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma of a stag beetlewith a human eye in its body ad wings with chequered flag design

Love Is A Verb

Fish currently feature frequently in Enigma’s compositions, though the circumstances are typically bizarre.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma of Santa with a huge fish in his present sack

Santa

Enigma’s representations of body parts might resemble pages torn from vintage anatomical studies though a recent fish emerging from an ear could owe more to Hieronymus Bosch.

Surreal Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma showing a fish peeped out of an ear

Pink Fish

Another theme in Enigma’s recent art has been shadow hands creatures.  Those “how to” guides to shadow puppetry never convince you that the contortion of the hands could cast the demonstrated shadow, Enigma teases you into the same shadow guessing game.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma shadow puppets

Shadow Puppet Series

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma showing a shadow puppet stag

Shadow Puppets

A conceptually paired couple of paintings play with the notion of a shadow rabbit created by hands then the actual creature casting a shadow of a hand.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma shadow hand making a rabbit with a passer by

Don’t Follow The Black Rabbit

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma of a rabbit and a shadow rabbit looking like a hand

Follow The Rabbit

Jeopardy crops up frequently in the paintings and this ship in its shattered bottle certainly faces stormy seas and rocky Shoreditch shores.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma of a ship in a broken bottle

Bon Voyage, 2022

Enigma even infiltrates occultist references onto Brick Lane walls, the grinning jester in his harlequin clothing is based on the Hanged Man in the tarot card system and represents submissive states such as surrender or sacrifice.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma showing The Hanged Man tarot card with upside down jester

Hanging Jester, 2022

Enigma garners respect and praise from fellow street artists and when you watch Enigma’s painting style close up you can see why.    His can control would be admired by many graffiti writers, those fractured cross hatching strokes come from practice and skill not accident or chance.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma detail of a mounted butterfly and a fractured Greek head statue

2nd Century Greek bust detail

Enigma has thus far had few gallery outings in London, what has been seen indicates his street art translates beautifully onto rough canvas, as spotted at the Secret Life Gallery in Shoreditch last year.   Instinctively it feels like there is more and better non street art to come from Enigma.

Painting of a rabbit and its shadow by Japanese street artist Enigma

Follow The Rabbit Canvas

Painting of a whale with human eyes and a bowler hat by Japanese street artist Enigma

Whale Watching Canvas

painting of a stag beetle by Japanese street artist Enigma

Love Is A Verb Canvas

There is a lot of fun to be had with a little light painting, a long exposure at night and Enigma’s high contrast imagery.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma showing a shadow puppet stag at night glowing at the edges because of light painting

Stag hands

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma

Hanging Jester at night

Enigma has proved to be very engaging with the public.

Shoreditch street artist Enigma fromm Japan talks to Shoreditch Street Art Tours guests

Hello

We just don’t see enough thematic street art paintings, if you want an idea of the kind of level Enigma is operating at it Ed Hicks might be a suitable peer, a comparison that neither insults Ed nor flatters Enigma.   The sources Enigma mines for his art, fractured ancient Greek busts, tarot cards, cast out demons and psychopathic Kubrick films do a bit more than merely hint at dark undercurrents within his art.   There is an intellectual depth and creative variety to Enigma’s painting and in the high turnover here-today-forgotten-tomorrow world of street art it is testament to Enigma that his paintings are memorable.  Let’s hope Shoreditch continues to play host to his street art for a long time to come.

Shoreditch street art by Japanese artist Enigma mackerel fish

Mackerel

All photos: Dave Stuart

Canvas art photos courtesy Enigma

Photo captions from Enigma’s Instagram


Vibrant Long exposure night photography of street art by Stinkfish in Brick Lane with light trails and light painting

Night Street Art Photography

The days are getting longer, hurrah!  Another way of looking at it is that the nights are sadly getting shorter.  We are now over halfway through the Shoreditch night street art photography season and it has been a cracker.  The season ends pretty much when the clocks go forward in Spring so there is not much time left to join the fun.

Long exposure night photography of street art by Enigma in Shoreditch with light painting

Enigma with light painting and ghosts

On the Night Street Art Photography tour let me help you take stunning night photos of street art such as these.

Long exposure night photography of street art by Mr Cenz in Spitalfields with light trails and light painting

Mr Cenz with light trails and light painting

If you have never done long exposure night photography before you will be find yourself quickly immersed in gorgeous light trails, ghosts, night moods and light painting.

Long exposure night photography of street art by This One in Shoreditch with light trails and light painting

This One with light trails

If you have mastered the basics of manual photography and have say for example an ND filter then you can get into really arty night photography with an amazingly photogenic subject matter.

Long exposure night photography of street art by Alessandro Ioviero in Brick Lane with light painting

Alessandro Ioviero with light painting (Filters not necessary!)

You will find that the skills you acquire will be useful for many other urban night time urban photo opportunities.

Long exposure night photography of Spitalfields Market on a dark moody night with car light trails

Moody night in Spitalfields

You may even be able to create stunning gif animations such as this (Photoshop or a gif animator required).

Night Street Art Photography tours are arranged for individuals or small groups no more than 3, please contact me by email with your enquiry or you can learn more from our website.  We know where to take you and how to photograph it!

Long exposure night photography of graffiti by Real in London with train light trails and light painting

Real with light trails

All photos in this post were taken this Winter by Dave Stuart.

Links:

Stinkfish (feature photo) website

Enigma instagram

Mr Cenz website

This One instagram 

Alessandro Ioviero website

Wrdsmth website