25. East End London Walking Tour
I (Heather) was in London for a few days last October and decided to take one of the many street art walking tours offered in the East End. I chose Alternative London as they had very good reviews and also because they included some history of the area. Spitalfields and Shoreditch have seen many waves of immigrants from different lands over many years.
These houses on Fournier Street, Spitalfields, date back to the 1720's when the persecuted French Huguenots arrived and set up their silk weaving industry. When the silk industry declined the Jewish community expanded into the area and as they moved out the Bengali community moved in. Now down the road in Brick Lane you will find many curry restaurants and in the general area lots of street art.
An equally diverse number of artists showcase their talents in this area of London, many of them from Latin America. Here, our guide, Doug Gillen, of Fifth Wall TV, introduces us to the work of Otto Schade, a Chilean living in London. He is a successful architect but painting has become his strongest passion.
British street artist Stik is very recognizable for his stick figures.
A barber's shop had a door window painted by Paris-based French artist, Christian Guémy, known on the street as C215.
The Puerto Rican muralist, Alexis Diaz combined with his Argentine friend Elian Chali to produce this impressive work.
One of my favourites is this piece by French artist Bom K. on Pedley Street, featuring an individual in a Hazmat suit that's filling with toxins.
ROA from Belgium is well represented in the East End and many of his murals are well-known. This smaller one I particularly like as it can be found on Bacon Street. Although being a vegetarian I prefer to think of her as a liberated pig.
Japanese-born, London-based Saki & Bitches loves to paint her creatures behind bars.
More Latin Americans, again from Chile, Cines (Cynthia Aguilera) and Jekse (Sammy Espinosa) of Un Kolor Distinto Crew are active in Shoreditch. The very first mural of this blog is their's and the one below.
There are also some tiny bronze statues perched on road signs and posts around the neighbourhood by Jonesy, a Welshman by birth who now lives in the area. He found a dead pigeon in his studio one day and incorporated a wing from it into the design shown below.
Ant Carver is a London-based artist working from a studio in Hackney Wick. His non-commissioned street art work consists of large paste-ups, mainly portraits, often of celebrities.
The area around Brick Lane is full of street art that is forever changing and well worth a visit next time you are in London.