Belfast Beyond popped over to Manchester earlier in the month for a gorgeous wedding, dozens of Krispy Kremes, and about 350 street art photos! Rather than post all the pics here, I’ve just chosen some favourites!
What really struck me about the city, was the huge amount of paste-ups on the walls, something Belfast is lacking. Loads of stuff from Silent Bill, Silent Belle, Lost Hills, Boo Hoo, D7606, Spraychild, Face the Strange, Jimzina, and dmstff, were plastered all over the walls of the Northern Quarter.
My favourite paste-up was this really delicate little image by Dala, spotted near the New Wakefield Street railway arches.
I didn’t get the chance to get to Cornbrook to see the huge legal wall at the Irwell Warehouse but managed to get at least some snaps from along the canal. My favourite was this ‘Bones’ piece; can’t beat a nice bit of typography!
Also along the canal (and various other walls around the city) was work by Whale. Really cool to see such a simple character in so many different guises!
Another favourite was by legendary Manchester street artist Akse. He is perhaps most famous (to me anyway!) for the city’s beautiful David Bowie tribute, painted last year, however he has been an active artist for 25 years. I spotted this piece of Lorne Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton’s character in Fargo) at the Mantra Warehouse; apologies for the dodgy photo; this was taken through a gate with a rather large dog on the other side.
Lorne Malvo was part of the ongoing ‘Psychopath Project’ for which Akse has painted a number of famous movie and TV villains, including Richard Harrow, Jules Winnfield, and Annie Wilkes.
Stevenson Square (home of Out House) was number one on my to-do list, however the Makers Market was taking place and obscuring most of the artwork there. So while I wasn’t able to get a photo of the infamous ‘Sloth‘ by Qubek, I did get to chat to some very interesting people! Lindsey of LSD Creative was selling her awesome street art photography at the market; check out her website and Instagram for tonnes of photos including pics from this year’s Upfest, and follow her other Instagram to check out her own creative work.
I also spoke to Thomas of Bee Mancunian, who sells his own handmade ceramic bee plaques via Etsy, and at the Makers Market, and if you have have your eyes peeled, you’ll spot several on the walls of the city too! We picked up a festive bee plaque for our Christmas tree!
And speaking of bees, (Manchester’s worker bees, a symbol of the city’s industrial heritage) it was impossible to turn a corner without seeing some bee related street art; it apparently increased hugely since the devastating terrorist attack earlier this year.
Two of the most epic walls I spotted were both painted for 2016’s Cities of Hope Festival a street art event which aims to raise awareness of global issues.
The above is ‘722-481 BC’ by Faith47 and is part of her ‘7.83 Hz’ project. Follow this amazing South African artist on Instagram; not only is she an incredible artist, she posts some superb urban photography too.
‘Conflicts’ by Pichi and Avo, depicting Hercules and Nessus. ‘Pichiavo‘ are a Spanish duo who often use this classical style of painting layered on top of a graffiti backdrop.
And lastly, my absolute favourite piece of art in the city was this painted shutter by Doodles and Drips – one of my favourite illustrators!
For the other 300-odd photos, check out my Facebook album here.
Despite taking so many photos, this is only a tiny fraction of Manchester’s street art scene and I can’t wait to revisit this vibrant, friendly city.