It’s come around pretty quickly!

To think it was around 4 months ago when the UK Blog Awards final shortlist was announced is hard to believe, and tonight (17th May) the winner is announced at a ceremony at the Montcalm Hotel, near Marble Arch..

The Arts & Culture (Individual) shortlist is particularly impressive this year with street art aficionados “Hookedblog” and “Dutch Girl in London” just 2 out of the 10 or so blogs that will be vying for the coveted title. Regardless of results, it’ll be a great night and I’m really looking forward to celebrating another year of blogging!

As a result, this means that I had Friday morning to wander the streets and see what had gone up in east London since my last visit in late 2014.

Some great new stuff has appeared, as well as some older pieces that have slipped by on previous visits. You can check out some of my favourites from what caught my eye below…

There are few artists who have become as synonymous with the city that they work in as Stik. Placed off Brick Lane, this work, although definitely not recent is certainly still relevant, and amazingly powerful for such a minimalistic approach.

With an ongoing election campaign in the UK by the questionable UK Independence Party doing it’s best to undo the progress made in the country with regards to immigration and integration, it’s a good reminder that many of our towns and cities are greatly enhanced by it’s immigrant population.

Shok-1’s bones dominate one of the tube carriages at the Village Underground, a place I’m yet to venture into, but always find time to check out their showpiece wall.

The heart painting he completed just off Brick Lane is a stunning example of his work. The way he uses the paint to create a sort of x-ray effect is really impressive.

The almost smokey effect at the top left and right somehow makes it feel even more realistic and life like.

As I stood taking some photos whille dodging oncoming traffic (soaking up the standard incredulous stares from taxi drivers) I was waiting for it to suddenly jolt and start beating.

I get a thrill when I stumble upon some of Eine’s work when down here, the local graffiti writer turned internationally renowned street artist thanks to it (probably) hanging within spitting distance of Obama’s office in the White House.
Two things I really like in street art: bold lines and bright block colours. This has it in abundance. I genuinely never tire of checking out his letters!

An artist I’ve not been especially familiar with, but will most definitely be seeking out more from is Gary MSK. Initially I’d tagged this as Eine, there’s definite similarities, and both are really tight pieces. Bold colours and clean lines dominate with messages that sort of allow you to make up your own mind.

The last few times I was in London I’d completely forgotten about the car park at the south end of Brick Lane. It’s always crammed with great stuff and this time was no different.

While hanging about there taking a few photos, I bumped into a fellow enthusiast and had a good 30 minute conversation about art, music and everything in between. Not standard car park chat, that’s for sure!

Right next to us stood Fanakapan’s unbelievable realistic silver helium balloons. They made we want to try and stick a pin in them, but something tells me it wouldn’t have done much…

Similarly, this from (what I think is) the Horror Crew, is just crazy. The only shame is that more people won’t see this incredibly detailed and delicate work.

Pop art Kim-Jong Un. Nothing more neeeds to be said here, I think you’ll agree.

Interesting message at the top left here which read, “is mayonnaise an instrument?”.

Answers on a postcard please, let’s sort this out once and for all.

Finally, for now, another all from James Cochrane aka Jimmy C. It’s his portrait work that captures my imagination the most.

Although I enjoyed what I’ve seen of his recent foray into painting street scenes, I feel like his work is most effective when concentrating on people, relationships and their emotions.

Anyway, plenty more to share so keep an eye out on the usual outlets including here on the blog as well as on Facebook and Twitter.

Keep your fingers crossed for tonight, follow all the action on the hashtag #UKBA2015!

Steven
UKB

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