Home Bristolian Upfest makes major announcement for 2021 event

Upfest makes major announcement for 2021 event

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Organisers of Europe’s largest street art festival have revealed their plans for this year’s event.

Upfest was cancelled in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic but it’s set to return this summer, attracting thousands of visitors to south Bristol and filling the streets with colour.

Starting from May 15, Upfest’s global lineup of artists will be painting 75 walls in 75 days, bringing new colour and creativity to the streets of BS3.

This will lead up to the Upfest weekend, which will feature hundreds of artists painting live from August 28-29 at Greville Smyth Park.

Steve Hayles, Upfest co-founder, said: “It’s great to be getting started on painting the murals on the walls of Bedminster as the first element of Upfest 2021 which has been made possible with a DCMS cultural recovery grant from Arts Council England and a contribution from the Bedminster BID.

“To ensure we’re keeping visitors safe we’ve taken the decision to spread out the painting of the walls over the next three months, which means people can explore them and happen across our artists as they paint, in their own time and space.

“Our planning will be in line with the regulations around the easing of restrictions and more detail on that will be released over the coming months about the festival, artists featuring in Upfest 2021 were originally allocated a space in 2020 and it’s been great to be making plans to see them this summer.”

Esteemed artist and illustrator Will Barras will take on the role of Festival Artist for the project, which will see him painting the side of one of Bedminster’s newest additions, The Pony North Street, which is set to open later in May.

Barras grew up in Birmingham and moved to Bristol to study graphic design, before becoming one of the founding members of the Scrawl Collective.



Crowds admire the new murals at Upfest 2018
Crowds admire the new murals at Upfest 2018

Helping make the event possible are marker manufacturers Posca and Kobra Spray Paint, who will be providing artists with the materials required to create their pieces.

For further information about this year’s festival plans, follow Upfest on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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