Between the 15th & 20th of August, something massive went down in Bristol town. Taking place on Nelson Street, a grimey, dull stain in the centre of the city that most people would avoid setting foot on. However for this week, local graffiti don Inkie, promoter kings Team love & Bristol City Council got together to invite 20 of the worlds’ best street artists to do something about it.
The walls of the street and surrounding stairwells were sprayed with giant murals, some 20 stories high. The painting went on from Monday to Saturday and to celebrate it’s completion, Team Love took over the ground floor of an abandoned office block and hosted 3 clubnights to celebrate.
Not being all up on my graffiti history, I was lucky to get a little insight by an over-the-moon Inkie as to how special it was for the Bristol painters to have the likes of Tats Cru, El Mac, Aryz, Shoe and a load of others from France, Holland, Spain and Brazil join them in the city to paint. All of whom are crucial to changing the perception of graffiti as art.
On Saturday daytime the whole of the street was closed off, allowing the Team Love guys to push the boat out even more, placing a massive stage in the middle to host Greg Wilson and DJ Milo to name a few. The street was covered in grass, trees covered in knitting and thousands of smiling people blown away by the temporary surroundings.
There were other stages and I found myself at one tucked away on a rooftop overlooking NCP carpark where I caught the alfresco DJs and Eats Everything. This little video is a good walkthrough from up there, but also catches me and a mate mikey with some pretty embarrassing bass face action.
Needless to say couldn’t really miss out on getting involved. Myself and OCD Aka Ollie Davies put in a proposal to mr team love Dave Harvey & got stuck in with mapping 3 of the huge windows of the office block from the inside. Using the classic white bedsheets meant that it was viewable from the outside too. With a big mapped stage setup by Lumacoustics, a gigantic mirror ball and glowing cube seats it was all a bit of a spectacle which hopefully emphasized the uniqueness of the venue and the event.
The amount of videos & photos appearing online coupled with the fact that the street is still busy everyday, just shows how inspirational this weekend was. Not just the amazing Graff / Street-art, but the fact that something like this can happen here, created by people getting together and making it work, with the full support of the council. There’s a lot of love in Bristol right now!
Here’s a couple of videos giving an insight in to the event (and catching a tiny glimpse of our visual input).
This one in particular by Raspberry & Jam, I like a lot.
The good photos above are by Chris Cooper AKA http://www.shotaway.com/