Gallery: the colourful street art of Brighton
When the Prince Regent (later King George IV) built his seaside retreat in the small fishing village of Brighthelmstone in 1842, he didn’t know what he was starting. Or maybe he did? After all, all the fashionable world of his time followed his lead in everything, so it was only to be expected that they would follow him to the town that soon became known as Brighton.
There they would ‘take the cure’ recommended by the society doctor Richard Russell, drinking and bathing in the seawater to alleviate various illnesses. They would promenade by the sea and in the newly-created gardens; visit a spa and the theatre; and, if of the highest ranks, would be invited to the Prince’s magnificent Royal Pavilion.
The Royal Pavilion
Today visitors still flock to Brighton, just an hour’s train ride from London. And it is still fashionable, albeit in a rather different way. In fact, ‘difference’ is a key part of its appeal. The town is proud of its diversity and inclusion, particularly of the LGBT community. It has trendy shops selling vintage clothing and ethnic jewellery; more vegan restaurants and independent coffee shops than I believe I’ve seen anywhere else; and a proliferation of street art.
But it also has its traditional seaside elements: piers, ice cream and fish and chips, a promenade lined with hotels … I’ll come back to those in a future post but for today here is a selection of the best of the street art that I could find for this week’s Photographing Public Art and Lens Artists challenges. Look out for the genuine Banksy hidden among them!
As always, please click on any image to open a slideshow
I last visited Brighton in October 2021 when all these photos were taken
Great murals there, Sarah! I liked the owl one and the one with all the musicians.
Thanks Siobhan – those are both great but I think your Bend musicians mural is even better!
Ahhh, these are brilliant! So much to love. Two probable favourites are David Bowie and that fellow in the jungle. And the kissing police, of course.
Thank you Manja, I thought you would like these!
I’m not so far from Brighton, I must get round to booking a weekend away to explore. Interesting fact about the origins of the place, I had no idea!
I have an interest in the Regency period (born from a love of Jane Austen) so I’ve read a bit about the history of the town 🙂
What a fabulous collection, Sarah! Although I love Banksy, I also love Bowie…
Thank you Ann-Christine, I’m happy you enjoyed these 🙂
A really vibrant gallery Sarah, always enjoy a Bowie image. I would love to spend some time in Brighton one of these years. Perhaps in 2022 if I actually get home and we can squeeze it in.
Thanks Leighton – based on some of your London posts I am sure you would enjoy the Brighton vibe 😀
Sarah, my browser wasn’t able to connect with your newest post – through rose colored glasses. Please check your end. 🙂
Thanks Pat, I know there’s a problem there but not how to correct it 🙁 What happened was that I started with a very different title and introduction. I decided I didn’t like the direction I was going in, so completely revised the first two paragraphs and thought I’d changed the title too, as it no longer fitted. After hitting publish I noticed that the title was wrong, so I went back to edit it. Then of course the slug was wrong, so I changed that too, and that was my mistake, as all the emails meanwhile had gone out with the wrong slug! I could change the slug back but then it wouldn’t fit the title and also would mess up pingbacks and the link I left in my comment to Terri and shared on social media.
Here’s the correct link if you want to take a look: https://www.toonsarah-travels.blog/gallery-looking-on-the-pink-side/
Brighton rocks! So they say?
Haha yes 🤣🤣 And indeed it does! Thanks Jo 🙂
What wonderful street art you have on display. The red snail is just too fun. 😀
Thanks Cee, I loved the snail too 🙂 I have some other snails from elsewhere lined up for a future PPAC challenge so watch out for them some time soon!
Great collection. We were in Brighton only once for a family event – 24 hours – just got to have a quick lookaround before we left and we were so sorry then that we didn’t have longer – now there’s another reason to return….
It’s definitely worth going back to Marie 🙂 The last time I was there was a few years ago, but for work, so I saw hardly anything of the place. Prior to that it was decades ago, so I was really happy to go back and see how it had changed. There’s so much to see and do that I’m sure we’ll make a second day trip there some time soon!
I’m always amazed to see your street art photo’s Sarah! Love the one of the orangutans – their facial expressions are so real 😊.
Thanks – yes, I thought their expressions were really well done 🙂
Fab street art. The Orangutan is fun, my Mum is an Artist and has done great paintings of these wonderful animals, can’t quite see her replicating it as street art though 😆 Michaela
Thanks Michaela 🙂 I love Orangutans and this was one of the first pieces to catch my eye! Maybe your Mum could surprise you?!
That’s such a lovely eclectic mix: and yes, of course I spotted the Banksy.
That’s great, glad you found it Margaret 🙂 It IS one of his more famous pieces, although sadly a replica. The original was getting vandalised so they removed it, and even the replica has been covered in plexiglass to protect it. There was some controversy I believe, as the pub then sold the removed original, which isn’t really in the spirit of Banksy’s ‘art for all’ approach – although he himself has since sold works, l think?
I. J. Khanewala
An eye opener. I didn’t put down Brighton as having a particularly lively art scene. Unfairly, I see. That driftwood sculpture is such a great piece.
Oh yes, Brighton is super lively in all sorts of ways 😀 I loved that driftwood piece too!
What a cool collection, Sarah! It’s so fun and enjoyable to walk through these. 🙂
Thank you Amy, glad you enjoyed it!
A fabulous collection, Sarah! Wow! And even a Banksy in there! Of course, I love David Bowie and Aretha and Alice in Wonderland. But there are so many wonderful images here that it’s difficult to pick a favorite.
Thank you Patti – both for the lovely comment and for setting a theme that allowed me to share one of my favourite photo subjects 😀
Sarah, these are so beautiful. I could get lost in that town, just looking at all the public art, I think. The monkeys, elephant and Would-Be Banksy eating someone’s heart out were my favorites. thanks for taking us on this wonderful tour. I look forward every week to a great tour somewhere in the world! 🙂
Thank you so much for the lovely comment 🙂 I just wish I knew who you were!!
These are marvelous Sarah – my favorite is the “would be Banksy” which I really loved. Was there a real Banksy in the set? I’m thinking not but who knows?!
Thank you Tina 🙂 Yes, there’s a real Banksy – it’s the one of the Kissing Policemen on the large wall with all the music stars. It’s bottom right on the wall and I’ve posted a separate photo just of it and Aretha who’s right next to it. It’s covered by plexiglass to protect it from vandalism, and because the original was stolen – Banksy had to create a second version to replace it.
Honestly I didn’t notice them because my eye was drawn to Aretha. Having seen it again I don’t get the message to be honest!
Well you never know with Banksy as he never speaks about his art, but it’s generally held to be a celebration of Brighton’s relaxed attitudes to gay and lesbian relationships and its LGBTQ communities.