Bristol’s incredible, ever-evolving graffiti culture has made street art one of the city’s most famous attractions and seeking it out is a fun way to explore the city and tap into its independent culture.
Down narrow back-alleys, on bridges and building walls, Bristol acts as a giant canvas for cutting-edge graffiti masters including the world-famous Banksy. Here’s a list of street art activities not to miss in Bristol.
Bristol is the birthplace of Banksy, one of the world’s most famous – and elusive – artists. It was here that he cut his teeth in the world of street art and his famous murals can be seen all over the city.
You’ll also find some of his works in the city’s museums - Bristol Museum & Art Gallery (following his 2009 takeover of the museum) and M Shed.
Download a Banksy Bristol Trail App or grab a map of exciting street art from the Tourist Information Centre to head off in search of his distinctive, satirical stencilling at your own pace, or join a scheduled tour.
This urban paint festival is Europe’s largest live street art festival. Every July, over 300 artists from around the planet descend on Bedminster in south Bristol for one visually spectacular weekend.
Watch artists creating murals before your very eyes as they leave their unique colourful creations on over 40 venues in the area.
To celebrate their 10th anniversary event, Upfest is to feature animated megastar family, The Simpsons! Festival goers will be treated to renowned artist interpretations of The Simpsons - including Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie.
Matt Groening himself has handpicked three Upfest artists, Bao, Soker and Nomad Clan to create special Simpsons inspired pieces for the event. There’s also scrumptious street food, art workshops, live music and an affordable art sale.
Street art tours are a Bristol ‘must-do’ experience, with the artists themselves guiding visitors around the city's constantly-changing urban outdoor galleries.
Local companies Where The Wall and Graft offer walking tours which offer insights into the life and work of Banksy and other iconic artists and reveal the stories behind the culture that makes Bristol the street art and graffiti capital of the UK.
Fancy having a go yourself? Both offer street art experiences where you can learn to spray your own piece of graffiti art to take home!
The epi-centre of street art in Bristol, most of the buildings in this bohemian neighbourhood boldly display vibrant street art, with shops and businesses commissioning artists to paint their premises.
Go exploring and discover the ever-changing colourful facades of this part of the city – two notable pieces are the ‘Breakdancing Jesus’ and Banksy’s recognisable Mild Mild West at either end of The Canteen’s terrace.
One of the best places to see street art in the UK, North Street in Bedminster is adorned with a whole lot of street art within a short walking distance thanks to Upfest.
The murals here are given a makeover during the festival, so you’ll likely see something new even if you’ve been before. Make sure you check out the side of the Tobacco Factory Theatres building for a proper eye-popping moment!
Adrenaline-fuelled action sports and music festival NASS Festival returns for a weekend of banging Drum n' Bass, Dance, Hip Hop, Grime and high octane action sports.
Once again NASS and Upfest have joined forces to present a programme of live and curated art by some of the best local and international street artists in the game, including mural god Insane5 as well as local Bristol talent 45RPM and Sepr, who will be bringing their unique styles to the NASS Skate and BMX Park.
Once a fairly dreary backstreet in Bristol, Nelson Street was transformed during the See No Evil urban art festival several years ago.
Although many works have disappeared following regeneration in the area, several pieces still remain and they’re pretty hard to miss as they are several storeys high!
Nick Walker’s suited man, at 20 metres in length, makes quite the statement, as do the ginormous ‘Wolf Boy’, Stik’s Stik person and the striking ‘woman and child’ painted by Walker, Aryz and El Mac.
For more information go to Visit Bristol
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