Over Saturday and Sunday dozens of artists created new murals from Cosham to Old Portsmouth as part of Look Up, Portsmouth.
The event was the brainchild of Portsmouth-based street art star My Dog Sighs having seen the success of similar festivals in other cities.
Among the standout murals are My Dog Sighs’ on the side of Astoria nightclub in the city centre and The London Police’s, which actually covered a My Dog Sighs’ piece in Goldsmith Avenue on the side of Seadog Studios. There is also a run of more than 10 works in Central Street and about 20 in Wellington Street, as well as on the side of people’s homes and a variety of other locations. The finished artworks will now remain in place for all to enjoy.
Fatboy Slim, who works with one of the event sponsors, Pepita Coffee, was out and about on Saturday checking out some of the artists in action and ended being invited in to a barbecue at one of the homes being painted on.
The organisers gave out 5,000 maps highlighting all of the locations where the public could see artists at work.
Angela Parks of Articulate Sage consultancy helped organise the event and carried out feedback interviews with members of the public.
She said: ‘It has been absolutely brilliant. The feedback from people has been overwhelmingly positive and that they want more.
“One of the nice things we were told was that they could see other people walking around with the maps, which gave it a sense of community – like when My Dog Sighs had the treasure hunt at Easter.
“And in Central Street, the residents adopted the artists – giving them parking permits, letting them use their toilets and going to the shops to get them icepops while they were working in the sun – it was lovely.”
The festival was part funded by a grant from Art Council England and from Portsmouth City Council. Representatives from the Arts Council attended the event and Angela is already in talks with them to lock in a five year deal.
Angela added: “We haven’t totted it up exactly, but from our early estimates we think it was at least 20,000 people, probably more, who came along.
“It was truly representative of a really vibrant city.”