CULTURE NIGHT BELFAST 2017

Winter is coming.

I know you’re going to expect this post to go in a Game Of Thrones direction but i’m going to disappoint you. I know this is a Game Of Thrones quote, but I don’t know any more than that. No, this is a statement of fact. Winter, is coming.

How do I know that? The appearance of Belfast Culture Night on the calendar, the last event of the summer, one last chance to enjoy oursleves, and Belfast got to work to ensure they did just that.

As it tradition, more a happy accident but we’ll take it, the weather behaved itself and gave us dry skies. Off to a good start.

Culture Night is one of the highlights of the year but it wasn’t in my schedule in 2016 as I missed it due to being in England that weekend.

Ironically, this year’s event was held a week later than in 2016. If they’d held it on this weekend in 2016, I would have been able to make it.

As it turned out, I was hoping it was held in the same weekend as last year due to Linfield’s match being moved forward to the Friday.

I didn’t want to miss Culture Night two years in a row and Linfield go to Warrenpoint again in January, so I thought to myself that I could give this one a miss. My lucky scarf was in my right hand coat pocket as is now superstition. If I can’t bring them good luck in person, I may as well do it in spirit.

In the first years I started going to this, I arrived in Belfast City Centre just after 7pm. As each year passed, it became clear that I was already missing out on a lot by doing this, so I booked a half day, just as a did in 2015, arriving in the City Centre just after 5pm. However, the earlier arrival does make me lose track of time, wondering why it’s still daylight so late in September, not realising what time it really is.

My first port of call was the Cathedral Quarter, to take in the atmosphere, and to check out some of the Street Art photos I was monitoring over the previous days.

I headed to City Quays which was hosted events but there was nothing which interested me, so it was back to the City Centre and Cathedral Quarter.

I stopped off to St Anne’s Square to take in a wrestling match, there were matches all night. The match I saw (I didn’t picked up what their names were) the guy in the orange leotard beat the guy in the black trunks via a submission despite the guy in the black trunks giving him a hiding throughout.

There was more walking, venturing to University Of Ulster and Buoys Park, and then to the Gay Village in Donegall Street which was hosting live cabaret.

Inbetween that, I managed to check out some fencing and fire displays.

It was then back to Buoys Park to take in some Street Countdown, and that was me or the night, I was knackered and my feet were sore.

I’d like to think I will have recovered by the time Culture Night 2018 comes around

Photo Album

Culture Night 2015

Culture Night 2014

Culture Night 2013

Culture Night 2012

Advertisements

THE THREE JIMMYS AND CARL COX

Some more artwork from Glen Molloy which recently appeared in Belfast to bring you.

The first is from an alleyway along the side of Duke Of York, just at the corner before you turn left to go to Premier Inn, walking from Hill Street, where you can see his recent Hill Street Wall Of Fame mural.

It is of Jimmy Cricket. Wait, there’s more (Sorry. Not sorry). There are murals of Jimmy Nesbitt (who had a couple of repaints) and Jimmy Young beside it, complimented with an image of a flower beside it.

If it is a theme of famous Jimmys, Jimmy Callacher is an obvious omission.

There was a delay in getting the piece finished as Molloy was busy working on other projects in Dublin and Magherafelt while working on this as well.

Meanwhile, beside Thompson’s, Molloy has replaced his own mural of Ice Cube with one of Carl Cox.

The delay in getting the pictures of The Three Jimmys meant this blog would be posted after Carl Cox did a gig at Custom House Square, allowing me to get my hopes up that the man himself would post a picture on his social media feed of him at the mural.

Sadly, I was to be disappointed in that regard.

Carl Cox Mural Photo Album

The Three Jimmys Mural Photo Album

HILL STREET WALL OF FAME

If you’ve been in the Cathedral Quarter over the past month, chances are you’ve seen Glen Molloy hard at work on a new mural beside The Harp Bar, covering building work taking place at what is/was (sorry for not being up to date with Civil Service locations) NIEA offices in Hill Street.

It began for me with a social media post that there was a new mural of David Holmes in Hill Street. So, armed with my camera, I went to investigate.

I was busy doing other stuff and actually forgot to check out the main thing I was in Belfast City Centre for.

So, I came back later, saw a mural of David Holmes, and other works which were works in progress. Naturally, I got snapping.

There was a clear theme of music legends developing, so I went back every lunchtime and evening to snap the work that was in progress.

There was a brief stop in the work here as Glen Molloy was working elsewhere on a mural at Filthy McNasty. You can see a write-up of that here

Gradually, the wall was getting filled. Frustratingly, I missed photographing a key day in the painting of Van Morrison and Bap Kennedy due to biblical rain.

It wan’t the first mural of Morrison to appear in Belfast. There was one near the away entrance to The Oval in 2007, but that soon disappeared due to housing being build on that site.

The faces appearing on the mural are : David Holmes, Gary Lightbody, Nathan Connolly, Una Healy, Van Morrison, Bap Kennedy, Brian Kennedy, Fatboy Slim.

Photo Album

PURE HERE …… SO IT IS

Some new artwork to report in Belfast this week.

I saw reports on something developing on Social Media on Monday, so I headed out with my camera to investigate, and then again on Tuesday and Wednesday before getting photos of the finished piece on Thursday.

It’s at a pub called The Dirty Onion in Hill Street in the Cathedral Quarter. I went there once before heading to a work Christmas dinner. It was satisfactory. Think i’ll just stick to Football, Music and Street Art and give Pub Reviews a miss, though if any Bar Managers are reading, I will do reviews in exchange for free food.

As you’ve guessed from the pictures, it’s not the easiest mural to photograph due to it’s location. I don’t fancy climbing up to try and get some close-up shots.

The image is of Belfast celebrities and landmarks such as Colin Murray, Julian Simmons, Samson and Goliath, and The Big Fish.

It’s sponsored by a beer company and painted by Visual Waste, who probably thinks i’m stalking him, as i’m usually at the scene when he paints something.

As with anything done by Visual Waste, there is an accompanying video of how it was done. You can find it here.

Enjoy.

Photo Album

EAST BELFAST WALL OF LEGENDS

Anyone passing through East Belfast recently will have noticed some painting going on around the back of East Side Visitor Centre on the Newtownards Road. As more was painted, it started to become clear what it was, a collage of legendary people and landmarks of East Belfast such as George Best, Van Morrison and Holywood Arches.

A full list can be found beside the mural, as well as online here.

For information, the piece was painted by an artist called Dee Craig.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t do a complete progress piece due to it being too dark after work to get decent pictures, so the progress pieces I was doing was once a week, so I visited on successive weekends to get photos until it was completed.

Unfortunately, if you want to get close to it, you’ll have to wait, as there’s railings around it. When the area becomes open to the public, i’ll return to get some better photos.

In other Street Art news, I was out on my lunch on Thursday and spotted Donald Trump. It is to advertise a Burrito company in the City Centre, with the tagline “Make burritos bad ass again”. These are the sort of policies that got him into the White House.

The piece is done by Visual Waste.

As a bonus, there is a video of how the piece progressed from start to finish.

You’d better be quick if you want to see it, as it is on a board which is hiding building work, at the back of Belfast City Hall and next door to Ten Square Hotel.

East Belfast Wall Of Legends Photo Album

BE MY VALENTINE

New Street Art in Belfast to report, drawn especially for Valentine’s Day, depicting Jamie Dornan in the 50 Shades Of Grey (I don’t what that means but my female friends are fans of this) and the tagline “Be My Valentine”, done by the artist Visual Waste.

This image is on North Street and replaces the Sons Of Anarchy mural which was there previously, but was sadly defaced.

It isn’t the first time that Visual Waste has painted a mural of a man in a mask in Belfast, having previously painted a mural of Zorro at the other end of North Street as part of Belfast Culture Night in 2012.

The work of Visual Waste has been a regular feature on this blog over the past few years, and now he is on the BBC website, featuring in an article on Street Art in Belfast, alongside Emic, Friz and Glen Molloy, all of whom have also appeared on this blog over the past few years.

Photo Album

BELFAST PEACE WALL ART – FEBRUARY 2017

It’s that time of year folks, my every six months look at the Peace Wall in Belfast on Cupar Way.

As Street Art goes, I don’t think it’s of great quality, but for some reason I feel compelled to document it’s changes every six months.

Tourists seem to like it, as there were quite a lot of people at about 10.30am on a Sunday morning.

If I was a tourist in Belfast wanting to check out Street Art, i’d go to Donegall Street and North Street instead to be honest.

So, here you go, a collection of images from Belfast Peace Wall.

See you again in August

Photo Album

Belfast Peace Wall Art August 2016

Belfast Peace Wall Art August 2015

WINTER IS COMING

Spotted this on Twitter so decided to go out and get some photos of it, a new mural in Belfast City Centre of Jon Snow.

It’s not the guy from Channel 4 News, but the guy from Game Of Thrones, apparantly. Gonna let you in on a little secret, i’ve never seen Game Of Thrones and i’ve no real desire to. It’s just not something that interests me.

I’m probably the only person in Northern Ireland who hasn’t seen Game Of Thrones. I should probably be a tourist attraction in my own right.

If you’re looking for it, you can find it on Lower Garfield Street, opposite Aether and Echo.

The piece was painted by an artist known as Visual Waste, his work is a familiar sight in Belfast.

He has a video on his Youtube channel showing how he painted it.

Enjoy.

Photo Album

LEIA

Another week, another mural in Belfast paying tribute to a recently deceased celebrity. This time it is Carrie Fisher, who died in the final days of 2016.

This is in the East of the city in Loopland Park, just off the Cregagh Road. If you’re unfamiliar with the Cregagh Road and/or East Belfast, just head to Wyse Byse, cross the road and you can’t miss it.

Unsurprisingly, the mural is of her in the role that made her famous, of Princess Leia in Star Wars.

If she was painted holding a gun, the artist might have been able to get funding from a government department by claiming it was a community project.

I became aware of this mural when somebody RT’ed this post onto my timeline on Twitter.

The next night, I headed over to investigate and take a look. The problem with this time of year is that there is no natural light in the evenings, making it hard to get decent photos. Having a day job means I can’t get out during the day to have a look.

I returned the following Sunday to have a look but it was still a work in progress. The artist left a note to say so.

I kept coming back over the next few nights to check on the progress. By the Wednesday night, the note saying “Work in progress” had now changed to “Almost there”

And who was the artist? Glen Molloy.

Does that name sound familiar? Yes, he’s been featured regularly on this blog over the past few months, doing the “Wall Of Legends” near the Royal Mail, a mural on Great Victoria Street highlighting the plight of homeless people, and a tribute in Botanic to Prince and George Michael.

Where will he strike next?

Photo Album

THE CANVAS FORMERLY KNOWN AS BLANK

Just as he did in life, Prince in mural form (in Belfast at least) seems to go away for a while and then make a spectacular comeback, as a new tribute to him as appeared in Botanic on India Street. If you head to Alphabet Street, you’re in the wrong street.

If you don’t know where India Street is, it’s beside the Cancer Research shop, the kind of second hand store where you can find a Raspberry Beret ……. or possibly even some Diamonds and Pearls.

You may remember that a mural paying tribute to him appeared in Garfield Street within 24 hours of his death, of the symbol he was associated with, and the colour purple that he was associated with.

I usually cycle through Botanic on a Sunday and it wasn’t there last week. I noticed it when I got a bus through Botanic on Tuesday, so it was clear the artist in question had a Manic Monday.

I don’t usually travel by bus in Belfast, I only do so when it is raining. The rain wasn’t purple on Tuesday, by the way.

Even though I aim to bring you the Cream of Street Art in Belfast, I didn’t Gett Off the bus, deciding to wait until today.

There’s still a bit of space on the canvas, so i’ll bring you any news of updates if there any.

Photo Album