PAINT THE TOWN: LONDON MURAL FESTIVAL

EXHIBITION

Given its pervasive parameters (sprawling extensively across the capital, from Wembley to Walthamstow to Crystal Palace , with just a few areas of cluster) and fairly basic site map (suffering poor r esolution and dearth of detail-and rather frustratingly arranged alphabetically by artist rather than region or numerically), an interested individual must be fiendishly committed to organising a clear and efficient route through this inaugural cultural event. Some 50+ artists have taken to the walls and doorways of businesses, cultural hubs and housing estates in an open-air display of kinetic iconography, font and motif. Focussing on the pieces concentrated within the streets of Shoreditch, already explosive with street art, did not always work in favour of the official mural entries, their impact dulled by the swirl and dazzle of of expert works within their proximity (in fact, not wanting to ruin the immediacy of response, I did not research visually each work to identify it with address and mistook-and preferred, in one case-a graffiti work directly next to the mural festival item). The air vents in the plaza of the Leadenhall Building (better known colloquially as the Cheesegrater) have been repurposed as colourful industrial forecourt adornments; Camille Walala has painted the back of the Rich Mix in a splay of her signature felicitous geometric pattens (more impressive is her dimensionally ambitious and stylish reworking of Canary Wharf’s Adams Street Bridge into a sensually beguiling tunnel); Marija Tiurina’s playful, humorous and exquisitely tender offering is a gentle psychological chronicle of her activities during lockdown, her efforts to keep herself sane and balanced caught in quick, illustrative tableaux; Woskerski’s effervescent octopus avidly prepares an ice lolly for consumption. Further along in the Holborn neighbourhood, the elegant calligraphic hand of Seb Lester animates a particularly inspirational line from Persian poet Hafez, and Fatheat places an earthy, fertile garden hymn within Alf Barrett Playground, a local pocket park. Many works are yet forthcoming, no release dates provided, somewhere between conception and physical completion. It is the hope of the facilitators that many of the works will endure, but by nature this is an ephemeral art form, so it would be best to journey now in as timely a fashion as possible to see any/all of the works. If you don’t mind spoiling any surprise beforehand, armed with an arsenal of confirmed visual evidence, Inspiring City has a nicely arranged catalog of all the works. London Mural Festival officially ran through the end of Sebtember, but many works will persist

https://www.londonmuralfestival.com/

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