Tag Archives: Stencil

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Old Banksys Reappear In Shoreditch

Two old specimens of Banksy street art hidden for many years in Shoreditch have been brought back into public view and Shoreditch Street Art Tours was the only “outsider” present to witness the unveiling.   Two images, a huge rat and a TV being chucked rock star style out of a window have lain out of sight under protective wooden sheeting for 12 years though they are perhaps among the more “storied” of Banksy’s street artworks.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Banksy Rat and TV, May 2019

The stencils were created in 2004 when a festival was organised in the car park behind the Foundry bar.  They were visible until late 2007 when they were covered up under a protective wooden cover.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Sweet Toof, Cyclops, Burning Candy on the wooden protection, 2008

In 2010 Hackney Council made the preservation of the TV and the rat a condition of the planning consent for the demolition of the existing building and its replacement by an 18 storey (now 23 storey!) hotel.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

The TV out the window stencil, a brilliant rock and roll cliché, looked like it was made for that wall, it’s an image that has to be on the side of a windowless building that looks like it ought to have windows.  The image wouldn’t work on say a garden wall or a bridge support.  Inside the Foundry all kinds of crazy things went on and prominent in the bar was a array of flickering TVs, a TV flying out the window from the Foundry seemed entirely plausible.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

The rat has always been a bit unsatisfactory, It has never been clear what this rat is about, it is often described as a rat with a knife and fork but if you look that is actually a jigsaw blade not a knife and the fork is more like a harpoon or a pitchfork, we don’t know what the rat is doing, why it fits at this location nor what the red ring around the eye is about and the technique is a bit sloppy.  However Banksy’s street art isn’t diminished by poor execution, they were never meant to be superb specimens of perfectly executed art and indeed evidence of haste is perhaps part of the essence of the way Banksy has to create his street art.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

“Eat The Rich”? Banksy

More significantly, Banksy hated the rat!  When asked to comment on the closure of the Foundry in a 2010 BBC news broadcast, Banksy sent one of his classic emails saying

 “No one ever went there for the beer-it was always a bit warm and flat. I would appeal to the developers not to keep my graffiti. It’s a bit like demolishing the Tate and preserving the ice cream van out the front.” Banksy, Newsnight email 4 Feb 2010”

There you have it, the artist Banksy does not wish the art to be saved and so the council’s 2010 decision to require its preservation is morally dubious to say the least.  Note the explicit confirmation that the artwork is a genuine Banksy.

It is interesting to note that the TV image has a Banksy tag next to it and they are increasingly rare out in the wild.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Banksy tag

The immediate future for the rat and the TV is that metal frames are going to be constructed around them and after separating the wall from the rest of the building structure and dismantling the walls above the art by hand, a massive crane is going to be used to lift the two wall segments separately over the building where they will be stored covered up at the front of the building site.  The developers have not made their ultimate intention clear, their obligation is to provide free viewing access to the public of these two Banksys either within the hotel or somewhere else within the Borough.  The developer is known to have planned to include 6 other Banksys from the Foundry building within the so-called Art’otel development but none of the other 6 survive.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Banksy Grim Reaper, Foundry

For the meantime, make the most of the brief period visibility of those two Banksys in their original location before they lose whatever sense of context they may have had in their original location and ponder the puzzle of why the council decided to preserve this rat against the artist’s own wishes yet remain oblivious to some real masterpieces that appeared on the Foundry building before and since.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Buffed 2011 – feat Elmo ATG, & Gold Peg and Sweet Toof collab

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Elmo, Masker, Milo Tchais, Run, Zezao, Gerard Gademann; May 2011

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Jo Peel animation, 2013

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Fintan Magee (detail) 2014, also feat Eine, Pez, ALO, Borondo

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Waleska Nomura. 2015

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

Phlegm, 2015

Note the knowing nod to Banksy’s TV in the phlegm above, very nice.

Banksy, rat, stencil, tv, Foundry, Shoreditch, London, art otel, art hotel, street art, street art tour

EINE “Last Days Of Shoreditch” 2016

This article is a summary of a longer version published on Graffoto blog

30 May UPDATE: The exposed Banksys have been covered up again!

All photos: Dave Stuart

Cartoonneros In London

A few weeks ago a fresh collection of stencilled portraits by Argentinian street artist Cartoonneros of the lead singer of Radiohead appeared in Shoreditch.   The memorable thing about this collection was that in going over existing artwork by King Headswim, the underlying naïve expressionist portrait with its compelling blue eyes radiated through Cartnoonneros’ work in a way not visible to the naked eye.

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Thom Yorke by Cartoonneros over King Headswim

Around the corner were more multi coloured stencilled portraits, similarly executed over someone else’s existing artwork as opposed to a prepared background.  The three characters depicted are the artist Keith Haring, David Bowie and the Pink Floyd musician Syd Barrett.

Keith Haring, David Bowie, Syd Barrett by Cartoonneros

A day later I had the pleasure of bumping into Cartoonneros on the streets whipping up some more stencils, this time the images included Vincent Van Gogh and Kate Moss.

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Van Gogh by Cartoonneros

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Kate Moss by Cartoonneros

Cartoonneros explained that he usually employed three stencilled layers in his street art but that he would often spray different colours in different parts of the stencil, meaning that a single layer could be used to render multiple colours.  In this next photo you can actually see the three different stencil layers used for the Van Gogh portrait are in position and each card bears the spraypainted remnants of the various colours from previous uses of the stencil.

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Van Gogh 3 layer stencil

Cartoonneros is also a sticker artist, several of his quite small stickers have been found lurking nearby.

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Cartoonneros Sticker

Cartoonneros then nipped to Amsterdam, Paris and Berlin but the lure of Shoreditch was too great and he returned last night to co-host “Wordplay” with Pure Evil, an evening of art and music.  The simple idea was all were welcome to spray stencilled words over a background pre- sprayed by Cartoonneros with a collection of multicoloured stencilled turtle and Keith Haring images.

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Love Keith Haring

Stencil, street art, street artist, Cartoonneros, Pure Evil, Pure Evil Gallery, Shoreditch, London

Evil Passion at The Pure Evil Gallery

The evening involved an overseas street artist previously virtually unknown on these shores exhibiting in the Pure Evil Gallery and creating beautiful mayhem on the streets, quintessential Pure Evil.  A fuller description of the event is on the Graffoto blog.

LINKS:

Cartoonneros Instagram

Pure Evil Gallery website

King Headswim Instagram

All photos Dave Stuart

Banksy, Street art, mural, Dover, Brexit, EU Flag, painter, ladder, stencil

New Banksy Appears In Dover

Another year, another Banksy, at last!  The port of Dover, a major port with the shortest distance between UK and the European mainland, found itself the proud home of the latest outdoor street art masterpiece by Banksy.    A huge version of the EU flag with a worker chipping away at one of the 12 stars greets inland arrivals coming into the port on the main road from London.

Banksy, Street art, mural, Dover, Brexit, EU Flag, painter, ladder, stencil

Banksy

When it reveals itself to you from about ¾ mile away on the hill descending into Dover, its audacious scale and  visibility is quite breath taking.  This isn’t tucked away on a back street facing somewhere anonymous, you simply can’t miss it.   By the end of this year this could be one of the most viewed single works of art in the country, perhaps even the World.

Close up the attention to detail is awesome.  Check the drop shadows on the chipped off pieces of the stars, look also at the cracks, they are stunningly painted and close up you can see each crack represented by two contrasting lines very precisely drawn alongside each other.

Banksy, Street art, mural, Dover, Brexit, EU Flag, painter, ladder, stencil

Banksy

The subject of the work is clear, it’s about Britain leaving the EU but is the piece perhaps a bit ambiguous?  Is the worker  “Leave” supporter taking great delight in symbolically destroying the EU or are his actions showing us how devastating the course the UK is seemingly irretrievably embarked upon is, in other words pro-Remain.    Context is everything with Banksy and his views are pretty clear if you think back to art he put up in Calais in 2015, Steve Jobs as an immigrant; a child gazing through a telescope across the channel to England but a vulture (death) perches on the telescope; and his “We’re not all in the same boat”, a raft borrowed from “The Raft Of The Medusa” by Théodore Géricault.   The issue was the refugee crisis but the clear message was more compassion was needed meaning open boarders, Banksy is pretty clearly a Remainer.

Banksy, Street art, mural, Dover, Brexit, EU Flag, painter, ladder, stencil

Banksy

Timing is a bit of an issue since the decisive vote which lead to our latest Prime Minister changing her mind completely from “remain” to “a red, white and blue Brexit” was 10 months ago.  The issue is central to our current general election process but only to the extent that the PM seeks a mandate to do as much damage as she can without subsequent recourse to the population.  Banksy’s mural seems to be more timely if considered in the context of the French presidential election which reaches its climax this weekend as the eminently sensible French electorate chose a centrist pro EU president rather than a far right candidate hell bent on wreaking further disunity and harm to the EU.

Banksy, Street art, mural, Dover, Brexit, EU Flag, painter, ladder, stencil

Dover – Gateway to Europe

The placement of this piece is magical.  Dover is defined in its present and its history by this country’s relationship with the continent, whether that means trade, migration, vacation or war.  Almost no one passes through Dover without registering that this is a point of departure, arrival and communication and it is all about the short cross sea link to France. It is hard to imagine a place in the UK where a Brexit piece could resonate more with its surroundings.

This post is an abridged version of a post I wrote for Graffoto blog, head over there for more views on the way Banksy may have created this masterpiece and similarities to older Banksy street art.

Banksy, Cheltenham, CGHQ, stencil, phone box

Banksy GCHQ Reduced to Rubble – Or Is It?

A mist of news, rumour and myth swirls around Banksy and at times he doesn’t actually need to do anything to cause it.

 

Back in 2014 Banksy executed one of his best pieces, a trio of spies eavesdropping on the conversations of people using a phone box in Cheltenham (written about here).  Cheltenham is home of GCHQ or to give it its full official title and description, the UK Government Communications Headquarters which is “the centre for Her Majesty’s Government’s Signal Intelligence (SIGINT) activities”.

Banksy Spies - photo Martin Bull

Banksy Spies – photo Martin Bull

The subject, the placement and the execution were absolutely top notch as can be seen in the photograph above by Martin Bull (author of the highly recommended Banksy Locations and Tours Vols 1 and 2, among other books).

 

News broke yesterday that someone had removed the wall on which the Banksy spies had been painted, photographs show a rectangular cut out from the wall where one of the spooks had been and a pile of rubble on the ground.  There is a lot of uncertainty about what actually has happened to the Banksy and you perhaps should just read the BBC article here.

Banksy, Cheltenham, CGHQ, stencil, phone box

photo: from BBC report (link above)

A perhaps less noticed twist was that the Banksy incorporated the BT phone box into the piece, so anyone seeking to remove the piece and there are such people, see Mr Robin “Bankrobber” Barton mentioned in the BBC link, would need to strike a deal with both the owner of the property and BT.  Of course a phone box could be simply purchased though it would be unlikely to be the original phone box, so the piece would be not completely original.

 

Another little morsel of intrigue and curiosity is that it turns out the seemingly undistinguished end of terrace Victorian property on which the Spies piece was painted was a Grade II listed building.  Technically the owners would have been obliged and could have been compelled to remove the Banksy to restore the property to its previous condition.  However as can be seen in this BBC report a retrospective planning permission was given to incorporate the Banksy into the building’s listed status so that it could remain where it was.  That actually means that the owner of the building would have to preserve the Banksy, making the whole episode just a bit more murky.

 

This is the second time (to my knowledge) that a Banksy work has been protected in a planning application, I really don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

WRDSMTH and Megzany In London

A few weeks ago (I have been trying to find time to write this post for quite a while) London was visited by two artists from LA, Megzany and WRDSMTH.  WRDSMTH is no stranger to London, this by my recollection could be his 4th visit to London for the purpose of putting up some street art.  On his last visit just before the New Year he collaborated with a number of street artists from the UK.

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Working with mixed media stencil and pasted paper, WRDSMTH’s work has charm, occasional pathos and a subdued humour often tinged with romance.  His work is thus, very popular. On this occasion, WRDSMTH put up his largest typewriter piece on his visits to London.

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti, Wrdsmth, stencil, paste up, typewriter, wall

There was also the small matter of his words appearing on large paste ups on the back of London’s iconic red telephone boxes.

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti, Wrdsmth, stencil, paste up, phone box, wall

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti, Wrdsmth, stencil, paste up, phone box, wall

The same day these new WRDSMTH pieces were spotted, a large crisply sprayed biplane with a curious message appeared on a wall on Brick Lane.  A bit of searching online revealed the artist to be Megzany, also from Los Angeles.  Megzany certainly knows how to spray a clean single layer stencil and her stencil construction technique has a lot of similarities with WRDSMTH’s.

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up, phone box, wall, Biplane

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up,  phone box, wall, bi plane

Apart from stencils, Megzany also pasted up images evoking sentiment about objectification exploitation of women and errr mermaids, placing them in vending machines.

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up, mermaid,  phone box

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up, mermaid,  phone box

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up, phone box

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up, phone box, wall, dancer

London, street art, Shoreditch, guided tour, graffiti,  Megzany, stencil, paste up, mermaid,  phone box

A fellow LA artist Kai Aspire has also been putting up loads of art over the past couple of months in London in entirely different forms, that may be the subject of another port sometime but it is great to see artists from a city so noted for its creativity coming all the way to London to brighten up a rather dull Summer.

All photos: Dave Stuart

Banksy, street art, stencil, Les Miserables, Knightsbridge, London, French Embassy, Calais, Refugees, Calais Jungle

Banksy vs French Embassy In London

After a long long wait (since mid 2012 actually) Banksy has sent us scrambling with a new piece of street art in London.

Banksy, street art, stencil, Les Miserables, Knightsbridge, London, French Embassy, Calais, Refugees, Calais Jungle

It is a stunning piece, combining political content, perfect placement and the big “wow – how did he pull that off?” factor.

Banksy, street art, stencil, Les Miserables, Knightsbridge, London, French Embassy, Calais, Refugees, Calais Jungle

The piece references the gassing of refugees in the Calais Jungle by French Police earlier this month.  It is placed right opposite the French Embassy, under the watchful gaze of their armed security guards and CCTV cameras.

Banksy, street art, stencil, Les Miserables, Knightsbridge, London, French Embassy, Calais, Refugees, Calais Jungle

Sadly this morning developers refurbishing the premises the art is place on were implementing a plan to preserve the work and solve health and safety issues arising from its placement, i.e., they were going to have it.  The removal attempt was temporarily aborted and they have resorted to covering it up with plywood.  so relieved to have got there in time.

Banksy, street art, stencil, Les Miserables, Knightsbridge, London, French Embassy, Calais, Refugees, Calais Jungle

There is a more detailed assessment I have written on Graffoto

all photos: Dave Stuart aka NoLionsinEngland

Otto Schade: Busy In Shoreditch

London dwelling Chilean street artist Otto Schade was busy yesterday replacing older Otto Schade works with new.  Continuing his theme of kids and weaponry, we get the chilling sight of a mother with her two children caught in the cross hairs of a rifle’s telescopic sight.

London, Shoreditch,street art, street artist, Otto Schade, stencil, Chile, tour, tours, walk,walks

This replaced a piece with young kids firing catapults in a one sided battle with military attack helicopters.  About a week ago this one was defaced with the tag “Fashion Is Fake”, Otto was quick to replace tagged with new.

London, Shoreditch,street art, street artist, Otto Schade, stencil, Chile, tour, tours, walk,walks

2014

The other piece painted yesterday has armed children taking on a court jester.

London, Shoreditch,street art, street artist, Otto Schade, stencil, Chile, tour, tours, walk,walks

 

This replaced an unfinished and rather half baked image from the same theme series.

London, Shoreditch,street art, street artist, Otto Schade, stencil, Chile, tour, tours, walk,walks

2013

Nice to see Otto busy in Shoreditch creating a quality of stencilled artwork which owes little to the rush of stencil bombing and a lot to accomplished stencilled street art.

Shoreditch, London, Street art, stencil, Bambi, Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, “Don’t do it”, “Just Do it”, “Don’t Shoot”

Bambi Hits Shoreditch Against Ferguson Missouri Cops

London street artist Bambi has created a powerful new stencilled piece of street art on a ”virgin” (bare brick, un-painted) wall in a high profile location in Shoreditch.

The subject is Michael Brown, though the image looks more like Obama (the ears?) repeated 5 times in a manner which ironically is a bit reminiscent of Warhol’s multiple gun toting Elvis image . The wall is right opposite Cargo night club and sits facing a couple of famous Bansky images, which also reminds us that Bambi has been often acclaimed (without foundation) as the female Banksy.

Shoreditch, London, Street art, stencil, Bambi, Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, “Don’t do it”, “Just Do it”, “Don’t Shoot”

Bambi is an interesting artist in so far as she collects column inches by the gazzillion (have a few more on us) yet shuns the normal street art capitol of Shoreditch in favour of North London locations such as Islington and Camden. Her repertoire is dominated by popular contemporary female icons and a dry sense of hmour and this has been sufficient to win her a loyal fanbase stretching way beyond the normal “scene” collectors”.

Shoreditch, London, Street art, stencil, Bambi, Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, “Don’t do it”, “Just Do it”, “Don’t Shoot”

“DON’T SHOOT” screams large blood red stencilled lettering repeated across Obama’s portrait and the logo on his clothing reads “Don’t Do it”. 100 yards away at the corresponding location on the next alley, Nikelab’s Shoreditch  premises proclaim “Just Do It” on a railway bridge wall in huge letters.  The raised hand brings some ambiguity to the image, is it “stop”, or is it a greeting?

The text around the images reads

“You abuse your powers again and again

Another innocent unarmed soul is murdered in your name

Filthy blue lies flow and flow

You shot him six times for just jaywalking home

Left in a pool of blood on the street

But you think it’s just another day on the beat

Come on justice must be done or anarchy will bite you on the bum

Bambi”

 

Update: It seems Bambi returned to make her message clearer by repeating the poetic refrain on the black surface of the building next to her stencil artwork. It wasn’t there in the original photographs, indeed it wasn’t there when we passed on Sunday at lunchtime but lo, come Monday lunchtime there was the fresh addition right under a sign warning “You are being filmed, if you graffiti our building you will be prosecuted”.

Shoreditch, London, Street art, stencil, Bambi, Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, “Don’t do it”, “Just Do it”, “Don’t Shoot”

The clearer surface means we can now update the text above where it wasn’t legible before.

Sadly, the cops aren’t learning much as the news comes through today that Graffiti writer Delbert Rodriguez Gutierrez died in Miami yesterday after being mown down by a cop in a car.  The president of the Miami Police union was reported to have said “..for every action there’s a reaction. If he would have not been committing a crime and then running from law enforcement, this could have been avoided.”

The owners of that particular wall aren’t keen to join in the street art fun and by Tuesday evening, the fresh work had been buffed – painted black. They have previous in hiding their sense of humour under a bushel, this retort by Smif 6 years ago didn’t last long either.

Shoreditch, London, Street art, stencil, Bambi, Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, “Don’t do it”, “Just Do it”, “Don’t Shoot”

all images: NoLionsInEngland