Speaking of Street and Urban art, when I first arrived in London I was doing some research into places where I could see different street artist’s work, from amateurs beginning their vandalizing careers, to the big dogs who’ve been around for decades.
I had no idea Shoreditch was somewhat of a ‘Street Art mecca’, but as it turned out, this place is completely filled with art in every form that you can think of from the moment you walk out of the Overground Shoreditch High Street station you’re flooded with more visual candy than you can possibly put into words.
There’s not a single street, an alleyway, or wall without a tag of some soft by someone who is trying to put their thoughts or visions on ink, paper or just plain letters.
The best part about it, is that just when you think you’ve seen it all, you haven’t even begun.
Recommendations if you want to visit someday:
1- Make a list of artists that you like to see pieces of (before you arrive). After you’ve gone crazy walking around the entire place and probably missed those pieces (like me) four of five times, you’ll finally come face to face with them and then you’ll be too hooked on it and you’ll want to see more. And you will. Trust me.
2 - Don’t be shy (even if you’re inevitably going to look like a tourist, ask people if the piece is not on some online map since graffiti, street art and urban art, whatever you want to call it, is sometimes taken down by authorities) but you just might get lucky and find pieces that have been there for a while, IF YOU ASK.
3 - Now that you’re there, go into all the vintage clothing stores you can find. They have some pretty unbelievable stuff in those stores and there are TONS.
4 - Old record shops and coffee shops. Visit them all. It’s like being in your favorite movie. (If you’re favorite movies include cool people with interesting stories about the place and great background music to go with it).
5 - Further investigation: We all know we have favorites, like in any subject or art. But don’t close yourself off. By asking and investigating a little further you’ll find there are other incredible artists just waiting to be discovered if you’d just tune your eyesight to what can turn up right in front of you as you wait to cross the street.
6 - Wear comfortable shoes, ‘cause it’s never-ending. Unlike any other place I assure you’ve ever visited.
And that’s about it. Other than that, it should be pretty easy for anyone to get around the famous Brick Lane and other exciting streets within Shoreditch. The people are great, the food is fantastic, coffee is strong and most of all, ART EVERYWHERE.
You can thank me later. ;)