Tag Archives: Banksy

Street Art on the Old Street Area of Shoreditch

One Off Street Art Tour By Popular Demand – More Art, Different Streets!

We have had several requests recently from guests who have done our public street art tour to be guided around the street art over on the Old Street side of Shoreditch High Street rather than the Brick Lane side.

Street Art on the Old Street Area of Shoreditch

Permissioned Graffiti colours from Eighties Conspiracy on Old Street

We have been running our private tours around the Old Street area for years, they are different to our public tours mainly because typically private guests such as office parties and school groups want a shorter tour.

Boris Johnson Borissor Coldheart Care Bare Artistic graffiti on the Old Street Area of Shoreditch by graffiti artist Tizer

Borissor Coldheart Care Bears by Tizer, Old Street 2020

Always eager to please, we are delighted to announce a public tour on Sunday 1st August which will start from Old Street Roundabout rather than Spitalfields Market.  The only overlap with our “traditional” public tour will be the very last part where we look at Eine and Banksy.

Street Art on the Old Street Area of Shoreditch

Paste ups close to Old Street

Book quick by clicking HERE, spaces are likely to run out.

Street Art on the Old Street Area of Shoreditch

Mesa work in Progress and Urocki, Holywell Lane 2020

This may become an occasional thing so if you can’t make 1st August 2021 just drop us an email and we can let you know when we arrange future dates.

Feature image: Stik and others on site of former Foundry arts space

All photos: Dave Stuart


Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison landscape shot

Art Of Banksy Appears at Reading Prison

A street art stencil has appeared on the wall of the former Reading nick and after making us wait a little while, it has just this afternoon been confirmed this is art of Banksy, the tease.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison wide context shot

Create Escape by Banksy, Reading Prison

 

As usual the confirmation comes simultaneously via his website and his Instagram and for the second time in less than a year it is in the form of a video showing in gripping detail an unidentified person spraying a stencil on a wall.  A well sorted stencilling strategy is so important to a successful outcome and the video contains many hints about the order of operations for this particular artwork.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison unnamed person stencilling

screengrab from “The Joy Of Painting With Bob Ross…and Banksy”, Copyright Banksy

The artwork depicts old fashioned “over the wall” flit by a prisoner and the presence of the typewriter suggests the escapee is a writer.  All the coverage has inferred the art is related to Oscar Wilde’s incarceration in Reading and that seems reasonable.  Lots of references to Oscar Wilde’s last published work “The Ballad of Reading Gaol” abound though many contend that the piece was written while Wilde was in Reading while literary historians say it was written post release.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison full shot

Create Escape by Banksy, Reading Prison

Plenty of local coverage draws attention to a campaign to turn the now closed prison into an arts centre so there could be a political aspect with Banksy possibly offering support, though this would be the exact opposite of his intervention in 2010 which condemned the use of his street art as the centrepiece of a new “art-hotel”.


Banksy’s London street art career is the subject of “Banksy – The London Chronicle” – the virtual presentation by Banksy expert Dave Stuart coming up over the Easter period, more details HERE 

composite image of Banksy street art with stencil rat and stencil Westway Highwayman

Banksy Virtual Tour – If Graffiti Changed Anything and Westway Highway Man


Three elements really raise this seemingly modest artwork in the Banksy cannon.  Its placement is stunning, it is by the give way lines on a major roundabout in inner Reading so the chances of the artist being spotted were very high and indeed there are reports and photographs of work in progress last Sunday.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison "Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals", reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

Work In Progress by anonymous photographer, Reading and Berkshire News

Secondly, it has context.  There is the physical context which is why you need to see the prison in the backdrop, not for nothing does Banksy’s video includes a rising birdseye view over the wall.  If you don’t see the prison buildings well, it’s just a high wall isn’t it.  The historical context too is important, this being where Oscar Wilde did time and so the prisoner has the old school (non graff) writer’s tools of the trade, the typewriter.  The weirdly downward pointing CCTV almost directly over the spot supplements the giggles nicely.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison closer shot

Create Escape by Banksy, Reading Prison

Most importantly, while politically it is relatively mute although some are contorting themselves to see it as Banksy support for a Reading art centre, it is a brilliant cartoon.  It ranks alongside the Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals cartoon from Banksy’s 2001 book “Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall”.

"Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals", reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

“Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals”, reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

"Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals", reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

“Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals”, reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

"Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals", reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

“Simple Intelligence Test In Dumb Animals”, reproduced from Banging Your Head Against A Brick Wall, copyright Banksy 2001

There is a key aspect which the media hive seems to have collectively missed.  The prisoner has been almost universally described as escaping from the prison using knotted blankets, even this afternoon in its umpteenth repost on the piece the BBC is STILL adhering to the idea they are bedsheets yet that is clearly not the case.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison typewriter detail shot

Create Escape by Banksy, Reading Prison

Someone has given the wily prisoner a typewriter and under the guise of a major lengthy literary masterpiece, the prisoner has surreptitiously typed an escape rope on continuous paper.  This is about outsmarting your captors, just like the monkey in the intelligence test.  Or, as Banksy himself put it in his punchline to that cartoon “A lot of people never use their initiative, because no-one told them to”.

Street Art Of Banksy at Reading Prison typewriter detail shot

Create Escape by Banksy, Reading Prison

Awesome.

Photos: Dave Stuart except as stated

 


Photo of back of the old Seven Stars pub showing huge white flowers painted by ThisOne on back of pub, along with wall panels painted by Get Busy, Agony, Attai and Tizer

Virtual Tour Triple Truffle

Approaching half term we are bringing a trio of street art nuggets to the world of Virtual street art pleasure.

“Just enjoyed a fantastic virtual street art tour with Dave. …. He did a wonderful job, and though we physically did not see the works in place, we were able to see many more, because of the format. …. Dave was extremely knowledgeable and had an engaging format. Highly recommend. “ Tripadvisor, Jan 2021

Shoreditch Street Art Virtual Tour

First up, Wednesday 3rd February we debut a new presentation highlighting current street art in Shoreditch, most of it created within the past month.  Think of it as something like the closest to what we’d look at if we did a real street art right now (hold that thought – ahhhhhhhh).  There has been some amazing art created in Shoreditch since we had to suspend real world tours at the beginning of December but Shoreditch Street Art Tours has been using its daily exercise period to record the latest art updates

Photo montage of street art created in Shoreditch in past 3 months featuring David Speed, Daeh, Pablo Fiasco, Get Busy, Tom Blackford and Attai

Shoreditch Street Art featuring David Speed, Daeh, Pablo Fiasco, Get Busy, Tom Blackford and Attai

Book the “Shoreditch Street Art Today (Feb 2021)” here


Banksy – The London Chronicle

Next up on Wednesday 10th February the ever popular Banksy – The London Chronicle is back again.  Looking at Banksy’s rise to fame through the prism of his London street art career, featuring nearly 100 Banksy artworks and 150 photos.

Book “Banksy – The London Chronicle” here

Photo montage, larger image is a stencilled rat with a paw dripping red paint and graffiti which says “If Graffiti changed anything it would be illegal”, second image is a Banksy stencil of a horse riding highwayman rearing back on its hind legs

Banksy – The London Chronicle


Political Street Art

Finally, yet another new presentation makes its debut, “Political Street Art”, a photographic review of political street art in London over the past 15 years.   I say “new” but the nucleus of “Political Street Art” has its origins as a segment included in some private virtual tours for schools and higher academic institutions.

Photo montage, larger image is a two painted portraits of children with very colourful clothing, the faces were sprayed by  street artist Zabou, the colourful striped clothing was made from fabric and wool by Mexican street artist Victoria Villasanna.  The smaller image is a stencil by the street artist Bambi which has the image of Emma Stone joyfully dancing with Ryan Gosling in the film La La Land but their heads have been replaced by Theresa May and Donald Trump and the caption changed to Lie Lie Land

Child Free Labour by Zabou and Victoria Villasanna, 2016; Lie Lie Land by Bambi, 2017

Book “Political Street Art” here


Go LARGE!

Discounted “combination” tickets for more than one presentation can be acquired by email info@shoreditchstreetarttours.co.uk direct.  Each individual “tour” costs £10; any 2 tours £18, all three tours £24.  Combination tickets will be issued manually, just tell us in an email which combination you would like and you will be sent a paypal invoice to pay by paypal or credit/debit card.


SUPPORT THE NHS – THANKS TO NHS HEROES

In gratitude for the huge effort our NHS heroes are putting in for our welfare and safety, a limited number of free tickets for each presentation are available to NHS staff on request by email.

Image by Banksy done in either charcoal or pencil of a boy in dungarees playing with a small doll which is a nurse in uniform rather than a caped superhero

Banksy Supports the NHS (canvas donated to Southampton General Hospital, June 2020), image courtesy Banksy.co.uk


Please remember the email address you signed up to this virtual tour with, use that to sign into Zoom. If you or anyone else using your device has previously signed into zoom and the “Remember User” box was checked it might be a good idea to sign out of Zoom first before clicking the Eventbrite “Join Now” button.

all photos: Dave Stuart


London, Graffiti, Robbo, Banksy, wallpaperer, Regents Canal, feud,art,street art

New Information On Banksy Robbo Feud

One of the biggest feuds in art-world history, street artist Banksy v graffiti writer Robbo is revealed to have rumbled on much longer than fans and art historians previously thought.

In December 2009 street artist Banksy created 4 illegal pieces of stencil art on the sides of a canal in Camden, London.  One of the pieces, the Banksy Wallpaperer revived an ancient feud between the street artist Banksy and the then retired but still famous London graffiti writer known as Robbo.

By re-imagining a very old relic of Robbo graffiti dating from 1985 into a stencilled worker applying that graffiti as wallpaper, Banksy appeared to be suggesting that graffiti piece was perhaps just forgettable mass produced background rubbish.

Robbo and Banksy then engaged in a prolonged  tit-for-tat exchange of insults by re-working those four art pieces in Camden, starting with Robbo turning the wallpaper into “King Robbo” on Christmas Day 2010 as first reported on Graffoto.

Street Art, review, 2010, Graffoto.co.uk, street art tours, tour guide

Banksy v Robbo, 25th December 2009, photo Dave Stuart

Many articles record that Banksy insulted Robbo at a party in the late 90s, Robbo assaulted Banksy and Banksy had nurtured the grudge ever since until his attack on the Robbo relic at the turn of the decade.

In a virtual presentation last week on Banksy’s London street art, street art tour guide and long term writer, photographer and Banksy fan Dave Stuart played a re-discovered and never before reported snippet of an exclusive interview with Robbo in which he says that Banksy had been attacking Robbo graffiti years before the Camden 2009 takeover.

In the interview, asked if he had been attacking Banksy art before 2009 Robbo laughingly replies

“………. before the King Robbo? No, he’s dogged [gone over] me before that has happened, I can show you a picture, it’s in one of his books. “

Banksy stencil of a Smiley Copper in Shoreditch over Robbo, amended

Smiley Copper, Banksy, Shoreditch photo Dave Stuart

The picture Robbo refers to is the Smiley Copper in Wall and Piece (2005).  Robbo then confirms that the feud started in the Dragon Bar in Shoreditch in the 90s before going on to say

“And after that happened, there was a full name throw up [graffiti] of mine, “Robbo” and he decided to put the grim reaper or the smiley face over the top of it and at the time, I thought if that’s the best he can do … “

Examination of the Smiley Copper indeed shows the capital R of a piece of graffiti Robbo says was his has been squarely hit by the Smiley Copper which unusually has a huge Banksy tag across the centre of the artwork, leaving the intended recipient of the message in now doubt as to who has gone over him.  In the world of graffiti there is no point in making a timid little mark over someone else, if you intend to insult someone you go big and bold.

Banksy stencil of a Smiley Copper in Shoreditch over Robbo, amended

Banksy Smiley Copper (amended), photo Dave Stuart

The Smiley Copper is believe to date from 2003 which indicates Banksy was picking the scab on that wound long before 2009 as previously thought.

Sadly Robbo had a terrible accident in 2011 which left him in a coma until his passing in 2014, rest in peace King Robbo.

The virtual online presentation “Banksy – The London Chronicle” is to be repeated this coming weekend at 10pm GMT on Saturday 9th January and 12 noon GMT on Sunday 10th January, times deliberately selected for convenience of Banksy fans in Latin America and North America and those in Asia and the Far East.

All photos: Dave Stuart

Dave Stuart will appear as an Expert Judge on TV art show Next Big Thing coming on London Live in the Spring, details to follow


Covid 19 Shoreditch Street Art

You didn’t think a killer virus was going to stop street artists did you?  Shoreditch witnessed an outpouring of street art addressing the Covid 19 pandemic and its surrounding issues from a number of angles.   It’s amazing what a street artist could achieve with that one hour outdoor exercise license non-shielding people had during lockdown.

One of the most prolific artists was Nathan Bowen whose suitably masked characters appeared all over from West to East.

“Stay Positive/The NHS Warrior” – Nathan Bowen

“Thanks NHS” – Nathan Bowen, Harry Blackmore; Oxford St

Nathan Bowen, Harry Blackmore, Ernest Obi – Shaftesbury Avenue

Almost as active as Nathan were Deanio X and Seen K26, often in the company of Tasnim Mahdy

Stay Strong – Deanio X, Seen K26, Tasnim Mahdy

“Stay Strong” – Deanio X, Seen K26, Tasnim Mahdy; Picadilly Circus

“Stay Strong Key Workers” Deanio X, Soho

Our weekly clap for carers, which was a beautiful collective thank you, has stopped but it is clear that many street artists remain grateful on our behalf to the NHS, to the carers and other key workers.

“A quiet prayer holds over London…” We Love Our NHS – Robert Montgomery

Thank You NHS – Jimmy C

Is it just me sees concentric stained glass hearts in shades of NHS blue in this homage by DRT?

DRT (with Nathan Bowen & Co. in background)

Graffiti Life

On the flipside from the love for the NHS comes blame flinging and conspiracy theory. The UK’s elected political masters and their un-elected advisers repeatedly preached one thing but practiced another to the point that anyone else would have felt embarrassed by. Street artists can be quite merciless when political hypocrisy becomes apparent and they proved yet again how swiftly street art can respond to current affairs.

In some countries the political response was based on denial or even deceit, Subdude latches on to those moments quite brilliantly.

Corona Credit Score = 0, Subdude

On the revelation that the NHS workers Boris thanked for his care in St Thomas’ Hospital were immigrants who now under the conservative government’s mooted minimum wage threshold would not qualify to come and lend their skills to the UK’s underfunded understaffed health service:

So How DO You Like Us Now Boris, Subdude

If you need to know what “Dominic Does Durham” is pastiching, ask your Dad

Dominic Does Durham, Subdude

The early days of the UK response to the Covid crisis were characterised by simple clear messages and this apparent clarity was reflected in the referencing of the messages in the art. K-Guy found the graphic design and linguistic shorthand of those official three stanza instructions we saw on the podiums at the daily Coronavirus press conference in England lent itself to highlighting political neglect as an amplifier of the spread and impact of the disease through hospitals and care homes.

It’s A Testing Time, K-Guy

“Infected frontline policies”, K-Guy

“Intensive Don’t Care”, K-Guy

The surprising move to abandon testing and tracing and the awful situation regarding inadequate PPE provision featured in several pieces. Frankie Riot references the famous press conference where World Health Organisation head Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus offered the simple “Test, test, test” which many developed countries decided to ignore with pretty devastating consequences.

Protect NHS Workers – Frank Riot

China again:

Covid Eau de Virus – ‘Orrible

Stay Safe, Remain Free – Artist Not Known

As Shoreditch Street Art Tours has emerged from lockdown doing very small private street art tours for the same price as the public tours, just so you know, the single piece of pandemic art everyone appears to be aware of is, not surprisingly, Banksy‘s nurse superhero painting on canvas “Game Changer”, donated to Southampton General Hospital.

“Game Changer” – Banksy, Photo: Banksy website

Banksy has done three pandemic related artworks: the aforementioned “Game Changer”; his earlier skit on the idea of the elusive rat stencilist working from home and most recently his brilliant makeover of a London tube with rascal rats parachuting with PPE face masks, rats tagging with sanitiser gel and rats sneezing all over the carriage in a lurid echo of the animation played frequently on the UK TV of the dispersal of vapourised snot from a sneeze in a train carriage.

Snot rat, Banksy

You don’t mask you don’t get – Banksy

You don’t mask you don’t get – Banksy

Among all the inspired pandemic related art and the positivity towards those who placed themselves in way of potential harm for our care, one artist was creating pro NHS art years before it became fashionable. Ben Wakeling recovered from his own mental health issues to channel his efforts into art as a therapy for people with mental health issues and his therapeutic work and his Outsider Gallery have proved so effective that his art therapy can now be prescribed by GPs.

To end this lockdown lookback on a positive note, could any message be more appropriate than Mark Titchner’s “Please believe these days will pass” plea.  Let’s hope the optimism is well founded.

“Please believe these days will pass” – Mark Titchner

Artist Links (additional):

Harry Blackmore

Ernst Obi

Robert Montgomery

Jimmy C

Graffiti Life

Frank Riot

Orrible

All photos: Dave Stuart except courtesy Banksy where noted


Diggin In The Archives 1

Two weeks ago today I received a text message from the NHS telling me I had to isolate, though I had actually gone into a self imposed lockdown a week earlier when I returned from my Father’s funeral in Ireland.  On a daily basis I have been digging through the photo archives and posting some older gems with a few thoughts on why I had picked them.  This is a compendium of the first two weeks worth.

This first photo I captioned “When dumpster diving goes wrong.” but it was about combining street art with found surreal elements, also the strong colours complemented the colour of Gianni Lee’s character outside Cargo.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Gianni Lee, Mar 2019

Sweet Toof, Rowdy and Knapple shenanigans last year, check their instas for a dose of artistic positivity . This photo reveals the scale of this collab which perhaps isn’t so apparent when you view it from street level.  Also, light as candyfloss as Knapple is, impressive piggy back stamina from da Toof geezer.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Knapple, Rowdy, Sweet Toof, January 2019

In 2009 David Choe dropped a heap of awesome stuff in London, I only found out [last week] that the guy spraypainting the underpass from the passenger seat of a moving car in the opening montage of Exit Through The Gift Shop is David Choe.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

David Choe, Nov 2009

Own that intrigue. Street art stimulates passers by in a way that adverts don’t. People notice.  Circles by L’Enfant, figure by David David, tile by Nathan Bowen, calligraphy (aka tag) YAS21.  This is the Old Truman Brewery wall that now is a canvas for Shepard Fairey’s Shadowplay mural.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

L’Enfant, David David, Nathan Bowen, Yas21, 2018

Although captioned “Give Us A bite”, I will confess that in 2011 I captioned this street photography style picture of Stik’s family group  “Who Ate All The Pies”.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

“Give Us A Bite”, Stik, 2009

Of all the weird, wonderful, beautiful, clever and funny stuff that appeared on Cargo’s walls, this by Bortusk Leer has to be the wackiest! Anyone else remember his kid’s tv series?

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Bortusk Leer, 2009

A squadron of Banksy Happy Choppers on Holywell Row, Shoreditch, there is a better photo by Steve Lazarides in his “Banksy Captured” book.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Banksy, 2006

Escif got a lot of coverage in the past week for his spectacular sculpture in Valencia which was torched as part of the Fallas celebrations, though with Spain in lockdown few got to see it actually live. In 2010 Escif had a show at Pictures On Walls in that period when it was welcoming folk in off the street, as opposed to the “by apppointment only” fortress it had been in its Scrutton St and Willow St days. These are POW’s shutters painted by Escif with Petro on window dressing detail.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Escif, also feat Petro, 2010

Elbow Toe had a stunning installation at the urban art epicentre The Leonard St Gallery. He visited London more than once in that era. He commented to me at the time that getting up in London felt so chilled compared to NY. This piece if I recall correct was a representation of his wife. 2007.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Elbow Toe, 2007

This context photo also features then Shoreditch based artist Jawa, and Mudwig is a small puce apparently but the many faults of Mudwig were regularly discussed on walls in those days.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Elbow Toe feat Jawa and Mudwig, 2007

Burning Candy owned the East End. Sweet Toof and Cyclops went large here on the plot opposite where CitizenM stands today, before the North London line curved past that building. Back of Chariots for those familiar with that landmark. Also features SNOE TRP, EINE and REAK.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Burning Candy, Snoe, Eine, Reak et al 2007

If you are going to admire someone else’s genius, nothing says “wow” quite as much as having your art admire theirs.  Pure Evil’s Pearly Kings express what the rest of us thought of Swoon’s 2007 amazing filigree paste up on Coronet St.   Also features Jef Aerosol looking pretty hyper and The Krah. This wall used to host some great street art.  Street art photography companion Howaboutno and I always disagreed on whether you should clear shit and rubbish out of photos.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Swoon, Pure Evil, Jef Aerosol, The Krah, photo 2008

Judith Supine from NY made surreal psychedelic art which really paid attention to its surroundings, location was everything. This one is by the entrance to the long lost iconic Dragon Bar. Such a shame we don’t get visits from Judith Supine any more.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Judith Supine, 2007

Nurses and doctors are the front line, they are performing heroics without thought of their own safety and in the face of apparent shortages of safety equipment that would render their service less fraught with risk. It is saddening to hear just now (when first posted to Instagram) of two nurses in the UK who have passed away after treating patients affected by COVID-19. Both were mothers of 3. My thoughts are with the family. This piece by Stik now seems sadly prophetic.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Stik, 2009

Roa had been dropping an amazing menagerie of dishevelled creatures in Shoreditch since 2009 but this gate in 2012 kicked thing up another level in terms of making visible a degree of gore which characterised man’s relationship with his fellow creatures. If it was shocking then, you hadn’t been paying attention.  Also, this was one of his less long lived London pieces and is correspondingly less well known.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

ROA, 2012

Damn tourists getting in the group portrait, Suriani’s dramatic pasteups made great photos.

Street art, Shoreditch, Shoreditch street art tours, London, Tour Guide, Dave Stuart, street art photography

Suriani, 2009

Standby for more blasts from the past for as long the shutdown prevents my return to work.

Art credits and links are by each photo.  All photos: Dave Stuart


Street Art, Shoreditch, London, street art tour, tour guide, Banksy, Stik, Roa, Dismaland, Dr D, Vermibus, Alo, Clet Abraham,

A Decade of Genius Street Art

As we start a new decade a review of a tiny amount of the amazing street art witnessed in the past decade seemed appropriate.

A Bun In Their Hair, ALO, Shoreditch 2014

Here is a slide show of a number of the images that made the final review of the “wild Wonderous and Inventive” art, which is a rather vague way of saying “stuff that wasn’t mentioned in our mural, sculptural or political street art reviews.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The only way to bring to a close this dredging up of our favourite specimens of wild outdoor art is to look back at what Banksy has been up to. Although Banksy produced far less street art in the past decade than in the noughties, on almost all respects other than quantity he continues to be the most important, brilliant and relevant artist in whatever field he chooses.

Banksy Dismaland, 2015

Banksy’s Better In Than Out in New York saw a month long treasure hunt – “hide and seek” combo which cast Banksy as Bonnie And Clyde against the NY mayor, police and press and the world watched with glee but we already knew Banksy would never be caught.

Better Out Than IN, Banksy, New York, photo LunaPark

He also had a major art triumph staging a group shop with a conscience at Dismaland though we already knew Banksy did extraordinary exhibition/experience fusion.

Dismaland, Banksy, Weston Super Mare, 2015

He created a huge mural in Dover in 2017 but we already knew Brexit was a stupid idea.

Banksy, Dover 2017

My favourite Banksy of the decade however was his Les Miserables in Knightsbridge, London’s embassy land.

Tear gassed Cosette, Banksy, Knightsbridge London, 2016

It has the Banksy signature elements, it had the cleverness in repurposing the iconic image of Cosette, it had the impact in terms of global exposure, right opposite the French embassy it combined perfect placement with the “wow, how did he get away with that.” factor.

We did not however know about the French police tear gassing migrant families in the camps in Calais and this was Banksy’s crowning achievement, bringing that shameful episode to wider international attention.

Cosette v French embassy, Banksy, Knightsbridge London, 2016

This selection of photos a part of the selection reviewed and discussed on the Graffoto blog post 2010 – 2019 Wild Wonderous Inventive Street Art

All photos Dave Stuart except LunaPark where noted

It has been a huge pleasure to write 5 reviews of the street art of the past decade which we personally enjoyed.  The Links to those reviews are at the bottom of the Graffoto review.  A specific review of the street art of 2019 might appear shortly.

 


Street Art, review, 2010s, Graffoto.co.uk, street art tours, tour guide, political street art, Banksy, Cept, EINE, Bambi, subdued, Tom Blackford, CodeFC, Uberfubs, Extinction Rebellion

A Decade Of Political Street Art

The third of our series reflecting on the street art we have enjoyed over the past 10 years looked at the street art that appeared on our streets.

Banksy had a lot to contribute politically over the past decade of course.

Banksy, Brexit, Dover

Much of the art was done without permission though there were the occasional huge campaigning murals.

Dave The Chimp – Education Is Not A Crime

Here is a slide show showing the photos that we pulled out of our archives, the full descriptive text about the political street art is on Graffoto, our other blog

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Street Art, review, 2010s, Graffoto.co.uk, street art tours, tour guide, political street art, Banksy, Cept, EINE, Bambi, subdued, Tom Blackford, CodeFC, Uberfubs, Extinction Rebellion

Banksy – If Graffiti Changed Anything, It Would Be Illegal, London 2011

Part 1 of the Decade 2010 reviews looked at where Street Art was in 2020: here

Part 2 was a look back at spectacular murals: here

All photos: Dave Stuart, principal guide and founder, Shoreditch Street Art Tours

 


Banksy, Robbo, feud, Banksy v Robbo, Street art, Graffiti, London, Shoreditch, Camden, Pure Evil Gallery, tour, tour guide

A Decade On – King Robbo

Christmas Day 10 years ago the notorious Robbo vs Banksy spat went to another level.   Robbo, RIP, headed out very early Christmas morning, crossed the Regents Canal at Camden directly under British Transport Police HQ and painted the perfect riposte to Banksy’s Wallpaperer.

Banksy, Robbo, feud, Banksy v Robbo, Street art, Graffiti, London, Shoreditch, Camden, Pure Evil Gallery, tour, tour guide

25th December 2019 KING ROBBO!

Early that Christmas morning I noticed a photograph on Flickr of Robbo’s new iteration of this piece posted by Robbo’s WRH crew mate Doze.   The genius was immediately apparent from that photo.  I whizzed straight down to the canal, took some photos and “Banksy vs Robbo WRH, WD – Checkmate” was posted online before Christmas lunch was served.  It remains to this day the most read post on Graffoto.

Before Robbo’s Christmas morning adventure, the art on the wall consisted of a workman by Banksy wallpapering over some graffiti, which was actually over an ancient Robbo piece.

Banksy, Robbo, feud, Banksy v Robbo, Street art, Graffiti, London, Shoreditch, Camden, Pure Evil Gallery, tour, tour guide

Banksy Wallpaperer, 19th December 2019

For context, Banksy vs Robbo was an intense feud with ancient origins but for roughly a 6 month period it raged spectacularly at several locations along Regents Canal in Camden as each artist attacked the other’s art with a succession of insults.

It’s tongue in cheek, it’s all a laugh, it’s a giggle” Robbo told Graffoto about 10 months later when we met for a beery one on one unpublished interview in his local near Kings Cross.  Robbo also said in reference to the art Banksy was producing at the time “A couple of things I like, the graffiti wallpaper, that was a good piece, so was the global warming, that was a good piece.  I appreciate art, I’m an artist. I’m a graffiti artist that’s my main flag but I am an artist”

Banksy, Robbo, feud, Banksy v Robbo, Street art, Graffiti, London, Shoreditch, Camden, Pure Evil Gallery, tour, tour guide

Robbo exhibition opening night, Pure Evil Gallery, Sep 2010

Banksy, Robbo, feud, Banksy v Robbo, Street art, Graffiti, London, Shoreditch, Camden, Pure Evil Gallery, tour, tour guide

Robbo exhibition opening night, Pure Evil Gallery, Sep 2010

Robbo mentioned how he didn’t have much to do with social media so his mate put up the photo on Flickr, then early afternoon Robbo received a call to tell him the piece had already been picked up by a blog.   Robbo said some kind and appreciative things about the Graffoto coverage so on the 10th anniversary of that event it is a pleasure to remember that exciting piece of art.

Banksy, Robbo, feud, Banksy v Robbo, Street art, Graffiti, London, Shoreditch, Camden, Pure Evil Gallery, tour, tour guide

Robbo RIP, Tribute by  Adnate (Aus) in Shoreditch. Sep 2014

Graffoto Christmas Day 2009: “Banksy v. Robbo – Checkmate”

All photos: Dave Stuart