I took my 11 year old and his grandparents to see the show a week before it closed, just in the nick of time. He wasn’t sure whether he should enjoy it or think it was well uncool to be see there with Nana and Grandpa. His verdict?
“It’s the establishment’s attempt at anti-establishment”
Hit the nail on the head, my son. For when the same artists who were previously operating covertly on the streets of Bristol are invited into the most established art space in Bristol, 150 years old with Her Majesty as patron, you know that Street-Art has moved into the mainstream. They’ll be giving Banksy an OBE next.
There were plenty of younger art lovers there, at least half of them with the cameras out. The street-art culture is to make your mark and take a photo – it may all be rollered over by Bristol City Council tomorrow. All the big names in Bristol were there; Cheo, Sick-boy, Nick Walker, Kato – come on, even I’ve heard of them. In fact you can see much of the same stuff every day if you walk down Stokes Croft in Bristol and for free.
What I loved here though was the way they’d incorporated the art into the building – it was all over the walls and the skirting, with individual canvases worked into the floor to ceiling murals. And now it’ll all be whitewashed over to make way for a new exhibition – that’s the real crime. Next time, we need to make all this talent into a permanent exhibition within the Bristol cityscape like the East Side Gallery in Berlin.
There were some in jokes that you’d get if you live in Bristol. The cardboard sitting room installation must be where those homeless cider drinkers from the hostel on Stokes Croft would like to relax, complete with the copies of Big Issue for bed-time reading.
And those sculpures of the “homeless pigeon” on a pile of cold chips can be seen in real life in many a Bristol underpass or shop doorway.
So sorry that the show’s closed now, but enjoy the photos and do check out the Crimes of Passion website and the video below.
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