Off to Bristol, off to Upfest and for another #43Leaves artdrop piece…

A #43Leaves piece, April 2022, East London.

This weekend it is mostly about Bristol, Upfest and a new #43leaves artdrop.  I have been invited to paint at the festival this weekend, you can find out lots more via the Upfest website, rather looking forward to travelling West this weekend, art need to engage like it does at things like Upfest. You will find me painting on Saturday morning either at Ashton Gate Stadium or the very nearby Greville Smyth Park where the live painting goes on throughout the weekend. I do believe there’s something like two hundred of more of us painting over the weekend along side all the pieces that have been painted ahead of time on the walls of the Upminster area of Bristol. The festival is a free to enter event, expect art, music, food and well, who knows what else? 

“Upfest is back! 28th & 29th May 2022. Upfest is renowned for bringing together street arts freshest talents and this summer festival fans can expect to see incredible murals emerging in the streets of Bedminster starting from 5th of May. Following three weeks of street painting, the festival weekend will see hundreds of artists painting live with festival hubs at Tobacco Factory and Ashton Gate Stadium. For the first year the festival will take over Greville Smyth Park as its main venue with music and live painting across the weekend”.

There will be a new art drop piece in Bristol over the weekend, a #43Leaves piece on the streets of Bristol and especially Upminster (I expect it will start somewhere around Temple Meads railway station this Friday afternoon). A piece of work in 43 parts, 43 paintings on found (this bit is a very important part of it), 43 paintings on found unwanted recycled material picked up off the street, material found, cleaned up, painted on and then left hanging back out there in the street for people to just take should they wish to. These pieces are about engagement, about recycling, reusing, the #43Leaves hashtag on the back is rather important as well, it is there so that the finders of the art can be part of the piece  as well. Finders are encouraged to post photos of themselves with the pieces, to tell us where the painting is going, to just be part of it all. A piece of art in 43 part without the need for a gallery of for money to be involved.

I can’t recall when the first “art drop” was, a quick back of an envelope calculation has it easily past 2000 paintings and pieces left, probably more like 3000 over the last dozen years or so, I wasn’t really counting before that. It has been happening since the last century, the art of art dropping.  These days the so called drops are mostly done as one body of work in 43 parts, one piece of art made up of 43 paintings, the tag on the back these days reads #43Leaves. 

Further reading / Upfest 2022