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Art Activations by Filthy Luker, Gabriel Pitcher, and more in Bristol, England

October 8, 2021
5 min read
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New art activations have been unveiled in Bristol as part of Vanguard x TOward 2030, What Are You Doing? – an on-street project aligning art with sustainable conversation throughout the city. 

Artists Richt, Peace of Art, Filthy Luker, Mau Mau, Gabriel Pitcher and Paul Harfleet are the latest artists to install works across the city, each inspired by one of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and aligned with community action.

Photo credit: Paul Box

Each artist has also partnered with a local community group to show how Bristol is localising global conversations on poverty eradication, environmental protection and societal equality. New activations will be popping up across the city throughout October. 

Artist duo Filthy Luker has taken over the rooftop of We The Curious, Bristol with an inflatable floral sculpture to amplify SDG15 Life on Land, in partnership with The Natural History Consortium. 

Photo credit: Paul Box

Savita Willmot is chief executive of The Natural History Consortium, a charitable collaboration of 14 organisations working together on a shared mission: to develop, test and disseminate best practice to engage everyone with the environment and natural world. 

Speaking on the collaboration with Filthy Luker, Savita noted how art is a powerful tool to spread environmental awareness:

This year city partners came together to create the first One City Ecological Emergency Strategy. Our challenge is to now bring these ideas to life across the streets of Bristol. Arts and culture are at the heart of our city, and harnessing the engaging power of art will be crucial to tackling our environmental emergencies.

Photo credit: Doug Gillen

Gabriel Pitcher has partnered with community ambassador, The Global Goals Centre to paint a mural in St Werburgh’s, Bristol celebrating Bristol 17 hero Katie Cross, founder of Pledgeball. 

Pledgeball harnesses the power of football and its fans to accelerate the pursuit of global sustainability. Through affiliated clubs, it prompts fans into small lifestyle ‘pledges’ in support of their favourite team and their only planet and empowers fans by demonstrating the huge impact even small changes can make for the benefit of themselves and their environment.

Photo credit: Doug Gillen

Speaking on the collaboration Gabriel Pitcher said:

I’ve always been interested in exploring and documenting the stories behind the people I paint. This portrait celebrates Katie Cross, her sport and her effort to ignite that same curiosity and energy for engaging meaningfully with the conversation on climate action.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, were adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

The series of art activations is curated by Charlotte Pyatt and runs alongside the blockbuster exhibition Vanguard: Bristol Street Art running until 30 October at M Shed, Bristol. 

Photo credit: Peachy Hanna

Campus Pool Skatepark to celebrate the role of skate culture in fostering pathways into the creativity industries. Founded in 2011, Campus Skateparks is a not-for-profit organisation that uses the positive energy and influence of skateboarding to engage with children and young people. Through its work with different communities around Bristol, it focuses on promoting inclusivity in the skateboarding scene.

Photo credit: Pete Metclaff for Fifth Wall TV

Mau Mau has teamed up with community partner Frank Water to reflect on our behaviour and attitude to water. His mural on Surrey St, St Pauls, also uses the Graphenstone paints and considers water as a global system and how our actions here affect water supplies across the world.

The Vanguard team is made up of a collective of artists, specialists and collectors involved in the global street art movement. Their debut exhibition will be presented at Bristol Museums’ M Shed. The project is led by Mary McCarthy with creative direction from Charlotte Pyatt, art direction from Justin MacCarthy aka DICY, design direction from Graham Dews aka PARIS.

Photo credit: Plaster

Vanguard’s Outreach and Art Interventions Partner TOward2030. What are you doing? is an award-winning cultural project conceived by Lavazza Group’s Sustainability and Communications Departments and executed in 2018/9 with the City of Turin. It strives to activate the dynamic energy of art on the streets to create a dialogue with the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the host city. It aims to unite and inspire creatives and communities in a positive and meaningful way, using art as an accessible bridge to the goals. The project strives to encourage relationships between sustainability and the urban art community by fostering collaborations between cities, artists, organisations and NGOs.

Check out below for more photos of the project.

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