All photos: NoLionsInEngland
May was a busy month for street artists and photographers of street art. London has been blessed by visits from a plethora of overseas street art stars, let’s start with a few shots of work by an artist new to us, Dede who is reported to come from Israel. Dede’s paste ups were all nice, original and well placed but specially noteworthy were the huge quantity of evidently handmade (screenprinted?) individual stickers
Also from Israel, regular recent visitors Unga and Tant of Broken Fingerz crew popped back to Shoreditch recently to paint some naked chicks on bikes with big handle bars stuff. It’s what decaying disused doorways are for really.
The international invasion turned intergalactic with the arrival of Space Invader, whose Earth base is in France.
London always welcomes Belgian artist ROA and this month he obliged with two of his finest large scale murals. One located on South Bank must by dint of the nature of the tourist spot and also the heavy traffic on passing railway lines be in with a shout of being his most eyeballed ever, while the other in a grim alleyway is far from the beaten track for anyone other than winos, junkies and street art photographers.
DALeast and Mrs DALeast, herself more commonly known as Faith47, arrived to decorate various walls around Shoreditch. DALeast ran a cheeky little competition for the first 50 people to photograph all 7 pieces he did in London, the twist being the 7th one is located on private property behind locked doors and I can testify that a polite knock earns a frosty reception, so no image here of that particular holy grail.
Yola is another artist previously unheard of who visited London and put up some large scale paste-up. Whilst this particular wall has been running for far longer that is healthy in an active street art scene, we weren’t impressed with the lack of respect in papering over this DScreet/Cept collab on Bacon St. On the other hand, this may possibly be a symptom of the pressure on space these days with so many spots reserved for curated/permissioned street art.
YOLA over Dscreet
South Coast native Shuby visited London and revealed a complete potty-mouthed approach to letterpress paste ups though frankly who’s surprised, surely you remember the “knickers” portraits from a couple of years ago?
Early in the month we located a cluster of Lad stickers by The London Police but the star find were these custom kicks done in “get your chems here” boots over the telephone wires style.
THE LONDON POLICE
Not all invasions were intergalactic, Kid Acne brought a fresh wave of his Bouddica referencing Stabby Women to various front doors.
At some point local hero Benjamin Murphy did this stab through the heart though we only found it in May so it qualifies for this months’ HSW.
BENJAMIN MURPHY (artist formerly known as AD/SO?)
An all too infrequent visit to Hackney Wick for a whistlestop shutter clicking frenzy yielded a cluster of ballerinas by spraycan impressionist and rude tagger Neoh.
Many London graff photographers have got used to popping in to the Kings Court car park to photograph the high spec spraycan artistry available there on a fairly good turnover. However, about 6 months ago the moody bastard on the gate who I always made a point of checking in with said "no photographs on weekdays, punters don’t like it; weekends only”. More recently this became "no photographers at all", a point reinforced with a laminated notice displayed at the gate. You can take spray paint into the car park but not camera lenses???? Cue our community’s applause and general mirth at Malabrocca’s huge fuck-off notice directly opposite. Apart from the dig at the car park proprietor’s, there is of course the irony that documenting the art breaches its prohibition, ho ho.
We have been hugely impressed with Jonesy’s use of street art to promote environmental awareness and score political points. This seemingly unique piece appears to show an over-furry figure with a stunted tree growing out of his head squatting behind a begging bowl, so while we like the art its meaning has us a little baffled.
Aida’s fluorescent cheebra’s, half zebra, half cheetahs have been popping up in a few locations, curiously they always seem to yield good photo opportunities which reflects good placement.
I mentioned this was a busy month for photographers what with 2 street art photography shows and a debate on the nature of the incestuous relationship between street art and photography, there is also the small matter of the Street Art Photography Workshops which I want to brazenly plug here. The essence of the idea is spending about an hour talking through tips, hints and ideas for photographing street art with the aid of a slide show then to go out onto the Shoreditch streets to play with the wide range of opportunities for street art phototgraphy. The feedback has been pretty awesome and the workshops continue. Check HERE for updated news and schedule. Plug over. For this time.