The mob then, no no that The Mob, a different mob and no more posting Cockney Rejects songs about the Mile End and the 69 bus to Canning Town and questioning the authenticity of the line up and those claims about people painting the walls of the East End, we did all that already in the preview a few days back, the name of the show and the claims on press release might annoy a tiny bit, enough of all that though, this is a rather fine show, a show to be applauded. The line-up of artists for East End Mob at Dalston’s BSMT Space basement space gallery includes A.CE, Atomiko, Coloquix, Cranio, Dscreet, Mau Mau, Mighty Mo, Pez, Rowdy, Sweet Toof, Tizer and Vinnie Nylon. They’ve come from the North of England, the North of London, street artists from Spain, from Brazil, from Hackney Wick to gather in a gallery in a basement on the edges of East London, an impressive gathering of names and smaller gallery pieces and a rather impressive show
How can you not like a show with Dscreet Owl or a Mighty Mo monkey, and to start picking out standout pieces really is ot approach things in the wrong way, although I do rather like that piece of Vinny Nylon pop art hanging on the brick wall in the splattered frame, and well how can we not pick out those excellent Mighty Mo pieces and Pat’s News and we could be on the way to the Camden Falcon for a Mint 400 gig at the end of the last Century (Mighty Mo and his gang really did rule Camden back then, those beautifully crafted pieces of Camden and Brick Lane walls recreated in perfect detail are really something special.
It is wrong to start picking pieces or names out, this is a fine body of work and a well put together show, do like the stylish graphic line of Coloquix though (don’t recall seeing that line on many East London walls but we’ve been there already), the Coloquix pieces stand out as gallery pieces, and those Rowdy alligators (or are they crocodiles?) and Sweet Toof teeth and Pez smiles do always bring on a smile. Street Art? Pop art? Urban art? Not everyone fits on a gallery wall, of course they don’t, the majority of this show does work surprisingly well in this clean cut polished floor white wall gallery though, this is a strong show, a fine gathering of well behaved well framed politely hung urban street art vandals
And word is the opening night was packed last night, certainly enough of those red dots of the walls today, street art clearly sells (we had Red issues elsewhere, can’t be dealing with art when there’s Red issues). These are the names then, the stars, the instantly recognisable characters, smiles and bits of three eyed, gold toothed, monkey headed goodness, a gathering of some pretty enjoyable urban flavoured call-it-what-you-want street art. A great show, nothing vital or particularly massively important, not like the show with the train yard fence, now that was really significant, a fine show and some fine art non the less, a fine gathering of art and artists, another rather good show, worth it just for those two Mighty Mo pieces and the owls and the teeth and the… no, no more picking out of things…. good show, nice one (SW)
EAST END MOB runs at BSMT Space until May 14th, Tues to Sat 12-7 and Sun 11-5. BSMT SPACE can be found at 5d Stoke Newington Rd, Dalston, London, N16 8BH.
A little more from BSMT Space about the artists on their walls.
A.CE is a London-based artist drawing inspiration in part from Dada collage and classic Pop Art. A key figure in the UK street art scene for over 10 years, his work is a raw presentation of nostalgic imagery.
Atomiko is a 100 percent Miami artist, growing up in the emerging Miami graffiti scene of the 80’s. His iconic orange character -as much a symbol of Miami as are the palm trees or neon lights has been placed all over the world.
Coloquix has been appearing on walls, in woods and in rivers in the north of England and beyond since 2013, where she is is often more important than how she looks. Her travels have extended to Europe and the US.
Painting since 1998, Cranio‘s trademark blue Indian was the result of his search for a character that could represent the indigenous people of Brazil. It could not have been chosen better! With their typical blue colour and distinctive shape, the Indians find themselves in funny and curious situations, provoking the observer to think about contemporary issues around consumerism, corrupt politicians and the environment.
Dscreet is an Australian Artist from a graffiti background. He now works in a variety of media including painting, film, sculpture and installation. He’s most well known for the “electrified owl” image which has appeared in galleries, books, films and streets all over the world.
With roots planted in the surf and country vibes of the North Devon coast, Mau Mau brings an air of rural sophistication to the art he has been knocking out for over a decade. He has chalked up a reputation through the environmental and politically astute threads that have consistently run through his artwork. His pieces are bitterly topical with a tongue-in-cheek sweetener.
Mighty Mo‘s motif first started to appear on London’s train tracks, streets, and rooftops more than 10 years ago. Originally working in North London he then spread East, where he collaborated with his fellow Burning Candy Crew members Sweet Toof, Gold Peg, Cyclops, Rowdy, and Tek33.
Pez started painting in 1999 on the outskirts of Barcelona. At first he used to write his signature, and soon it evolved into a fish. Searching for a universal language to communicate with, he decided to paint a fish character with a great smile near his tag and El Pez was born! Since then it has been a way to pass on good vibrations to the walkers on the streets.
Established in 1987, Rowdy became an integral part of the Bristol Graffiti scene. Rowdy’s trademark crocodiles can be found world-wide in huge scale and are indicative of the playful nature of the imagery in his work: long may we continue to see oversized mice and crocs attacking our walls.
One of the most prolific and artful of London’s Street Artists, Graffoholic Sweet Toof‘s tags, throw-up’s and more elaborate street pieces become a whole language that inform his studio work. His work is almost synonymous with the East End landscape, there are not many places that haven’t been decked out with the gums and teeth!
Tizer started painting in 1988. This founding member of the ID crew is a venerable Graffiti King with his own distinctive style and an inimitable suite of characters. A prolific artist, there is no part of London Tizer hasn’t painted.
Vinnie Nylon‘s work employs a host of pop characters in his mid-century inspired works which range from block print, screen printing and collage to large-scale painted canvas and wood panels as well as full scale walls. His interests and influence span from the 60’s pop movement to New York’s east village scene of the early 80’s.