See No Evil Gallery launched online

10 04 2013

See No Evil Gallery is a new gallery operating mainly but not exclusively online which showcases urban and contemporary art from a variety of leading UK and European artists, many of who have previously designed pieces as part of See No Evil on Nelson Street.

As well as the website, the gallery is aiming to attend major art shows and fairs as well as produce an active programme of solo and group shows across the year.

A stand at this month’s Affordable Art Fair Bristol, taking place at Brunel’s Old Station between April 26 and 29, will be their first physical presence.

There will be new paintings by artists including Mr Jago, China Mike and Jim Starr, as well as limited edition screen prints by Inkie, Dicy and Cept, and several mixed media pieces by Swifty including Swifty Cans (below).

Swifty Cans

The first 100 people to sign up to the See No Evil Gallery newsletter will receive 50 per cent off entry to the Affordable Art Fair. To sign up, visit

Stik visits Big Issue office in Bristol

15 03 2013

The anonymous street artist Stik, whose paintings of stick figures have been bought by everyone from Elton John to Bono, made a special visit to Bristol yesterday to sign copies of a print which is being distributed free all this week in copies of The Big Issue.

Stik - See No Evil Bristol 2012Look up next time you are on Nelson Street and you will see Stik’s gigantic work from last year’s See No Evil (right).

“That was scary as hell,” Stik told Bristol Culture in an exclusive interview yesterday.

“It took two days to do and my knees were shaking because it was so windy. But it’s the coolest piece I’ve ever done.

“Bristol is such a welcoming city. It’s like my second home. I’ve painted here a lot and I’ve got some great friends here.

“Bristol is definitely the UK capital of street art. It’s so advanced. The council is on the case and they just get it. That’s really important.”

Stik has been homeless himself, which makes the work that The Big Issue does all the more important to him.

Noser, a Big Issue vendor in Bristol city centre who like Stik wanted to preserve his anonymity so did not give his real name, got up extra early yesterday morning to ensure he would get some signed prints to sell in his own magazines.

“He’s been an absolute star today,” Noser said. “For him to come here to sign the posters is just great, and it’s already helped sales increase for a lot of people.”

For those unable to get a copy of The Big Issue, as well as the two huge figures on Nelson Street fans of Stik can also see his work on the side of the Workout gym on North Street next to a piece by Inkie, a Bristol artist who Stik calls “a great guy”.

So will Stik be painting in Bristol on his latest visit?

“I haven’t got a legal spot so it’s a no comment,” he said with a smirk.

Stik at The Big Issue office in Bristol

Could you give up your bed for a night? Join the first Big Sleep Out in Bristol on April 19. For more information, visit

Christmas art show in Goldbrick House

4 12 2012

A Christmas art show tomorrow in Goldbrick House on Park Street features original works and limited editions prints from a variety of street and contemporary artists including several from this year’s See No Evil. All pieces will be available to buy on the night, with prices ranging from £30 to £2,000.

Work for sale, of which there are a few examples below, includes pieces from Acerone, Dicy, Jody, Jim Starr, Schoony, Swifty, Dylan Shipley and Dora.

Inkie’s See No Evil mural removed

27 11 2012

A mural on Nelson Street by acclaimed Bristol graffiti artist Inkie, painted as part of this year’s See No Evil festival, was being removed today by the landlord of the building before it is sold to new owners who evidently care little about the world famous street art by a world famous street artist on their wall.

Inkie’s piece is the first image on the See No Evil page on the Visit Bristol website, the government-funded body who describe the event as “an inspiring masterpiece and a legacy for the city”.

Part of that legacy is no more, and with massive cutbacks in council spending due to bite the Bristol arts sector hard, it is unlikely whether Nelson Street will once again be transformed next year.

A new See No Evil book is being launched at The Bank on Stokes Croft tomorrow. Only four months since this year’s festival, it will be the only place to see the painting by one of its principal organisers.

UPDATE: November 29
Inkie has responded to a comment below calling his work “ugly, saccharine, ubiquitous and meaningless”.

He wrote: “for your knowledge i was more than extremely lucky to paint my contemporary doodles on this ugly building and slightly more then a tad gutted it has been removed but i am well aware that in a modern society nothing is permanent or for that matter appeals to everyone.”

Responding to another comment, he said: “I am from Bristol and was not ‘paid’ a packet to attend rather i was attempting to beautify my home town and put our proud city on the map, much more than most people bother to do.”

LongPlaya charity auction

5 09 2012

Those who wandered into the Westgate building during last month’s See No Evil would not have only been thankful to get away from the crowds, but would have been witness to LongPlaya, where 25 pieces of art from a Trunki to large pieces of card were painted.

All of the pieces created on the day are going under the hammer at 7pm on Friday at the See No Evil shop on Nelson Street, where they will be raising money for Knowle West Media Centre and Trinity Community Arts.

“We are looking to raise as much money as possible to support our communities’ creative media development,” says LongPlaya creative director Lewis Plummer.

“This is a unique collection in size, variation of artistic styles and creative audacity. Each piece serves as a long-living commemoration of both the LongPlaya event and See No Evil 2012, and a celebration of inherent Bristol creative talent.”

‘Secret’ See No Evil 2012

24 08 2012

If you think that you have seen every piece of artwork from last weekend’s See No Evil, think again. On the concrete pyramid in front of the former Bristol magistrates’ court is a piece by China Mike that can be seen from the road. But look behind the pyramid for this eye by Vyal from Los Angeles:

In other See No Evil news, the gallery on the corner of Nelson Street and Fairfax Street, in what used to be the Motaman shop, will remain for the next six months, selling prints, canvasses, posters, t-shirts, postcards, books and more.

See No Evil in Knowle West

10 08 2012

The Conservative party in Bristol seem to enjoy taking it turns to criticise the council’s support of graffiti art, so expect a few more jibes as we approach the second outing of See No Evil next week, which this year is part of the London 2012 Festival.

Nelson Street will again be the focus, with other events at Brunel’s Old Station with the Mails, Maps & Motion audiovisual extravaganza and a gallery in the Paintworks featuring original pieces from many of the artists taking part in See No Evil, and which you can win tickets to the opening by scrolling down to the end of this post.

The See No Evil message was yesterday spread further afield with Bristol artist Acerone giving a masterclass in graffiti to youngsters at Knowle West Media Centre (right).

It was here that I took the opportunity to question Acerone, also known as Luke Palmer, as to the ethics of teaching children how to paint on walls.

He said that before the spray cans were even produced, he told the group of mostly 11-year-olds what happens when you are the graffiti artist on the wrong side of the law, as opposed to taking part in See No Evil, a completely legal event.

“This has been a great opportunity to give some young people the fun element of graffiti, something that can seem at times to be a bit exclusive,” said Palmer, now so much part of the established Bristol art scene that he has designed the current Bristol University prospectus.

“It’s about achievement, it’s getting young people involved in a creative activity. This has not just been about letting them loose.”

Two of the young artists involved had both clearly been inspired. During the photo call, they could barely put down their spray cans, and excitedly pointed out their own sections of the mural.

Lewis Neale, 11, formally at Ashton Park Primary School and soon to join Parson Street, said: “I’m always at home doing art and graffiti and that, and I’ve learnt a lot today. Because I had an ‘s’ I put it as a snake, an evil bendy snake with teeth and colours.”

Mitchell Sully, also 11, who has just left New Oak Primary and will be going to the Oasis Academy in September, added: “I have enjoyed making lots of new friends and learning different skills. My ‘e’ is a Union Jack because I was thinking about the Olympics.”

We have 10 pairs of tickets to give away to the VIP launch of the See No Evil gallery at the Paintworks on Thursday, August 16. To win, email It’s first come first served, so be quick. If not successful, be sure to check out the gallery’s public opening times at

Mails, Maps and Motion at See No Evil

15 07 2012

The original platforms at Bristol Temple Meads will be brought back to life on August 17 to launch this year’s See No Evil. What promises to be a visually spectacular event is called Mails, Maps and Motions, featuring a host of one-off commissions and collaborations blending music and film.

One of the most exciting elements is the final performance of the night featuring Portishead’s Adrian Utley and Will Gregory of Goldfrapp, drawing on the film archive of the General Post Office and the history of the area, “from Brunel’s original sketches to the arrival of the 125, from the echo of the steam train to the building’s electric future… play(ing) with the city’s industrial history, offering an immersive aural and visual treat to leave you breathless”.

Unlike what will be happening along Nelson Street for the second year running, there will be no painting on these walls. Rather, artists will be projecting their canvasses onto the historic brickwork.

“The performance on Friday night will feature a selection of films and a host of Watershed collaborators bought together for the first time,” says Claire Reddington, director of the Pervasive Media Studio at the Watershed who will play a leading role in the event.

“The evening will explore themes of industry, modernity, technology and communication, juxtaposing our industrial past with the technological present.”

Film screenings on the night include Night Mail (1936), a film with a score arranged by Benjamin Britten and verse by WH Auden; Trade Tattoo (1937), commissioned by the General Post Office Film Unit and using animations to explore the rhythm of a British working day and to encourage people to post early; and Love on The Wing (1938), another animation featuring  “a dazzling frenzy of mail-related motion” which was banned by the Post Office for its use of risque imagery.

For more information about Mails, Maps and Motion and to register for your free ticket, visit

Preview: See No Evil 2012

23 06 2012

See No Evil is back for a second year in 2012. It will be returning to Nelson Street between August 16-19, and this year also moving across town for a launch party at Brunel’s Old Station with 3D projection experts AntiVJ creating a unique installation with music provided by Adrian Utley from Portishead and Will Gregory from Goldfrapp.

Thirty street artists from across the world will once again be painting Nelson Street, including abstract expressionist Remi Rough, Lyken, Nick Walker, alphabet painter Eine and Portuguese artist Vhils. Bristol’s Inkie is also returning to curate the event.

August 18 will see a free New York-style block party organised by Team Love, featuring the best of Bristol’s music scene providing the backdrop to live street painting and outdoor stages.

And August 19 is review day, where buskers will be chosen to take up a number of pitches throughout the festival site and lead the street party as artists put the final touches to their creations.

‘A multitude of talentless taggers’

9 06 2012

A former Conservative leader on Bristol City Council has fulfilled all of his party’s stereotypes for old-fashioned fuddy-duddyness by claiming that the ruling Liberal Democrat administration has become “fixated upon street art” to the detriment of the city’s prosperity.

“Sadly, for every Banksy in this world, there is a multitude of talentless taggers,” said Richard Eddy (right), golliwog fan and Conservative councillor for Bishopsworth, in questions tabled for this month’s cabinet meeting.

“This questionable art form is even being proposed as part of a £100,000 make-over for other parts of Bedminster under the Portas Pilots initiative. We need to know what sort of consultation has or will take place over using yet more money for this purpose.

“I am concerned that the Lib Dems seem to have become fixated upon street art as some kind of magic bullet to solve our urban ills and provide a quick fix to economic regeneration.

“Of course, in reality, I suspect much of this wall-to-wall graffiti will age very quickly and lend an impoverished aspect to most of the areas it has permanently infiltrated.

“I intend to find out where this policy of council collusion is taking us and whether in fact the present administration is hell-bent on turning Bristol into the graffiti capital of Europe.”

Eddy may be incorrect in that last assumption, because last year’s See No Evil on Nelson Street and last week’s Upfest on North Street proved that Bristol is already the graffiti capital of Europe.

I share a small bit of sympathy for Eddy’s views, as not every work that I saw on North Street after Upfest will be to everybody’s tastes. But then, that’s art. Opening in the Hayward Gallery on London’s South Bank next week is an exhibition called Invisible, featuring blank canvasses, and just that.

A spot of colour is better than nothing. Just take a look at these before and after photos from See No Evil, as a drab and concrete thoroughfare was turned into a vibrant and colourful outdoor art gallery, which still attracts many people with cameras every day almost a year after artists took over the street.

Eddy’s comments are ill-judged and misinformed. It’s almost as if there was a mayoral election coming up and he wants to garner himself a few much-needed column inches.