Having grown up in Bristol, I have always known that it is a very creative city. It has an incredible music scene, and a thriving theatrical scene, but one thing I think I have taken for granted growing up here, is the street art.
Bristol is, after all, the home of Banksy, who is now known all over the world for his incredible street art – and I know that is something I take for granted – people travel miles to see his work and I pass it whenever I go into town….but I’ve never properly sought out the street art scene and gone further afield to see the other beautiful creations that this city has to offer.
Last weekend, the biggest street art festival in Europe, UpFest, took place in Bristol. This has been going on in Bristol for years but this is the first I had even become aware of it’s existence! Each artist is given a canvas, whether 2ft squared or 50ft squared, and spends the weekend creating something beautiful on it.
I had no idea of the scale of some of these pieces too – some take up whole buildings, several storeys high – walking around the area was like someone had turned up the colour saturation of the city, with beautiful pieces and colourful creations on every corner, shop-front and blank wall in sight.
There was a proper festival atmosphere around too, with pop up food trucks and stalls selling coffee and cake all over. I had an amazing lunch at SkeweredBristol, a pop-up food company that does the best sweet potato fries, possibly ever, and incredible skewers of marinated meats, served on their own, in pitta bread, or with a salad – YUM!
The weather came out for it too, with the first day being so sunny I’ve still got a slightly pink upper back where my backpack hadn’t quite protected me from the beaming sunshine.
It was a really lovely weekend and one of those occasions where it makes you realise how little you look at what is around you every day – something I will endeavour to do more now that I’ve seen how much beauty and creativity there is on my doorstep!