Street art in Brockley, London

Street art in Brockley, London

If you think of street art in London, which area springs to mind? Shoreditch or Brick Lane, perhaps? Camden? You might not have considered Brockley, a south-east London enclave with the leafy feel of a suburb, but which lies on the zone 2/3 border, only 20 minutes away from the South bank and Tate Modern.

If you like street art, you should gen up on the area, pretty quickly.

From the 2nd to the 10th of June 2017, the third Brockley Street Art Festival will run alongside long-standing community arts festival  Brockley Max. Brockley has always had an artistic feel, with Goldsmith’s University, just down the road at New Cross, churning out an alumni of artists, musicians, actors and writers, many of whom choose to settle in the local area. It’s a place that’s spawned raw talent like poet/songwriter Kate Tempest, and whose creative energy will be further boosted next year with the opening of Goldsmiths’ new Centre for Contemporary Art.

Brockley has a long history of street art. There has been a portrait of Bob Marley just outside the station for forty years. It was later joined by Maya Angelou; when the pair were destroyed as part of a redevelopment around the station, a new Marley picture was commissioned from Dale Grimshaw.

Brockley street art

Bob Marley by Dale Grimshaw

A stroll around the streets of Brockley, as well as neighbouring Ladywell and Crofton Park, will also throw up fresh, new treasures by the likes of Dan Kitchener, Disk and Insa.

Brockley street art

Portraits by international artist Disk

Brockley street art

Galloping fox by Insa, which can be seen in motion through an app. The artwork top right is by Known.

Since Londonist teamed up with Global Street Art in 2015 to set up a local street art festival in London, and Brockley won the public vote, a dedicated team of volunteers has been working hard to gain permission for shutters, walls and even houses to be decorated.

Brockley street art

Hunto, from Brindisa, Spain, painted the house above, in his trademark Cubist-inspired style. The accompanying wrought-iron gates on the right were made by Kevin Boyes Blacksmith in his forge at Surrey Docks Farm.

Brockley street art

During the festival itself, several artists will be at work on newly acquired spaces. Mr Cenz (Julian Phethean), Keone, The Doodle Man and local arts collective Gourmandizing, among others, will create original artworks.

Brockley street art

Mr Cenz will be giving his workspace a refresh during the festival

which can be seen on one of the festival’s walking tours (see the website for booking details). A family version of the tour is available. For those who prefer the adult route, the tour ends in the Brockley Brewery.

I was taken on a preview of the festival tour. Here are a few more of the artworks that caught my eye.

Brockley street art

Playing with perspective: Artmongers, who will be at this year’s festival

Brockley street art

Brockley street art

French artist Kastrue enjoys beautifying urban spaces

Brockley street art

Neon, by Zara Gaze. This is one of a pair of science-themed artworks, funded by Steam Collective.

Brockley Street Art Festival runs from 2-10 June 2017. For more information, see their website.

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Brockley street art














Wander Mum
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  1. June 2, 2017 / 7:29 am

    Brockley is a fine place but I have never associated it with Street Art before, time to catch a train and check it out. I hear the cafes are good too! #CulturedKids

  2. June 2, 2017 / 9:20 am

    I have friends who live in Brockley and I must admit to not being aware of any of this art (perhaps something to do with going to their place at night for boozy dinners might not help!) I am in love with the house by Hunto! #culturedkids

    • June 6, 2017 / 11:13 am

      That house was hidden down a street I don’t visit that often, so it was a great surprise to find it!

      • Lydia
        June 8, 2017 / 10:29 pm

        Hi Nell, which street is the house on? Would love to go and find it!

        • June 12, 2017 / 1:50 pm

          It’s on Arica Road. Enjoy!

  3. June 2, 2017 / 4:29 pm

    This really reminds me of NUART which hit Aberdeen. The transformative power of these works, to quite normal streets, is not to be underestimated.

    • June 6, 2017 / 11:13 am

      You’re right – it’s really lifted the area.

  4. June 2, 2017 / 8:50 pm

    I had no clue all this existed in Brockley! I need to go visit! A wonderful array of artwork. I particularly like ‘Neon’ and the coat hanger too! #culturedkids

    • June 6, 2017 / 11:15 am

      The coat hanger’s cool. There’s a huge key by the same people, on another building nearby. They’re going to spruce it up over the festival!

  5. June 2, 2017 / 8:51 pm

    There isn’t much that I don’t love about this! My Instagram finger has gone all twitchy… When we are next in London, I will be surprising my family and insisiting on a day in Brockley. #culturedkids

    • June 6, 2017 / 11:15 am

      Do it! It’s the new Shoreditch….x

  6. June 3, 2017 / 12:11 pm

    I love the mural with the two kids side by side. It’s such a sweet idea for a painting. This sounds like a fun festival and I love that artists will be on hand to create new paintings. #CulturedKids

    • June 6, 2017 / 11:16 am

      That was one of my favourites, too.

  7. June 5, 2017 / 11:03 am

    Wow I love this! What a brilliant idea for a festival in a local area. The detail in the children’s faces is fantastic #culturedkids

    • June 6, 2017 / 11:51 am

      It’s a beautiful piece, isn’t it.

  8. June 6, 2017 / 7:57 am

    I love street art and have done tours elsewhere but never in London. Thanks for opening my eyes to it #citytripping

    • June 6, 2017 / 12:18 pm

      There’s so much here in London! You should give it a try the next time you visit.

  9. June 6, 2017 / 10:17 am

    Have enjoyed looking at these fabulous works of art again for #citytripping. Perhaps you could show me around sometime Nell?

    • June 6, 2017 / 12:21 pm

      I’d love to! We should definitely schedule another get-together soon xx

  10. June 6, 2017 / 11:30 am

    So many wonderful works of art, but I particularly adore that coat hanger! Something about the shape, wood grain and unusual juxtaposition reminds me of Magritte’s The Treachery of Images. 🙂 #citytripping

    • June 6, 2017 / 12:42 pm

      You’re right, it is very Magritte. Some of the artwork in Brockley would sit well inside Tate Modern.

  11. June 6, 2017 / 12:57 pm

    Great post Nell, some wonderful street art. Brockley is certainly beginning to rival Camden in the outdoor gallery stakes. #culturedkids

    • June 6, 2017 / 1:29 pm

      It is indeed! It’s great to see new parts of town coming up.

  12. June 6, 2017 / 4:42 pm

    I love street art! And you were right, as soon as you said street art in London I thought of Soho and Shoreditch and Camdentown. I’ve never actually heard of Brockley….I guess I didn’t study the tube map much beyond the Northern Line and sometimes the Central Line. Beautiful artworks! #CityTripping

    • June 8, 2017 / 10:33 am

      It’s a little-known place, but worth a trip!

  13. June 6, 2017 / 4:54 pm

    This is amazing! I love street art – it absolutely helps to bring life and colour to a neighbourhood.

    • June 8, 2017 / 10:37 am

      It does indeed!

  14. June 6, 2017 / 5:15 pm

    I once drove through this area and had no idea it had all these artistic connections. Last year my daughter and I went to London for the weekend to celebrate her doing well in her exams and she chose to focus on the street art – I wish we’d have known more about this area, I shall keep it in mind for future visits, thanks. #citytripping

    • June 8, 2017 / 10:41 am

      You definitely should!

  15. June 6, 2017 / 7:16 pm

    Wonderful post and art! I LOVE public art and will definitely be putting this area on my list of must see places! #citytripping

    • June 8, 2017 / 11:25 am

      Great news!

  16. June 6, 2017 / 9:23 pm

    You are 100% right. When I think of London street art I immediately think of Shoreditch. Definitely need to add Brockley to my list for my next trip to London.

  17. June 7, 2017 / 7:52 pm

    I’m going to need to google where Brockley is! I think you’ve put it on the tourist map. I love the nature of this street art. There is a lot of street art where I live but it’s all very grungy – the bright colours and vibrancy of the art you’ve shared from Brockley is much more appealing. I like the Hunto house and the Galloping Fox, they lend brightness and uplift to the area. #CulturedKids

    • June 8, 2017 / 11:32 am

      Yes, it’s a cheery, sunny place and I think the art reflects that!

  18. June 11, 2017 / 8:13 am

    This looks like a great art experience for kids: I’ll definitely be taking my boys next time we’re in south London. Thanks for highlighting street art, I hadn’t thought of talking about it to my kids before.

    • June 12, 2017 / 2:21 pm

      Mine love it!

  19. June 11, 2017 / 10:04 pm

    Love the idea of doing something different. We saw a lot of street art when we went to Bristol, so it seems crazy not to do the same in our home town. Particularly like that one with the hanger – amazing!

    • June 12, 2017 / 2:22 pm

      Yes, that’s one of my favourites too. All this street art’s a good excuse to visit Brockley, I reckon….

  20. June 14, 2017 / 7:12 am

    I do like those faces on the shutters. In fact, what a wonderful way of cheering up shutters! But having lots of different styles is what really lifts this. Some of the cartoony ones are a lot of fun too.

    • June 14, 2017 / 10:47 am

      Yes – the artworks in this area are all vibrant and colourful, in their own way.

  21. June 20, 2017 / 6:12 pm

    There’s certainly some talented people out there to create these. One of my sister’s attended Goldsmiths University. #CulturedKids

    • June 22, 2017 / 2:35 pm

      It’s supposed to be a great place to study.

  22. June 27, 2017 / 2:15 pm

    This is such an alien, unfamiliar world to me… I’m such a country mouse! 😀 I love the idea of beautifying urban public spaces and I’m greatly appealed by the transient nature of some of these artworks (surely they are quickly vandalised?!?). Really interesting! #CulturedKids

    • June 29, 2017 / 9:04 pm

      It’s interesting, but apart from the Insa piece, the artworks were all untouched. I guess that street art perhaps has more respect ‘on the street’ than more traditional artworks? You should definitely go and seek out some street art some time. I’d be interested to hear what you make of it.

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