28 September 2016 | 12 °C

| By: M@

Londonist Street Art Guide: 2. Roa

Londonist Street Art Guide: 2. Roa
Weasel? Stoat? We confess, we were off sick the day they covered Mustelidae identification at school. In any case, it's another fine piece by Roa, on the outside of the doomed Foundry building in Shoreditch.
Weasel? Stoat? We confess, we were off sick the day they covered Mustelidae identification at school. In any case, it's another fine piece by Roa, on the outside of the doomed Foundry building in Shoreditch.
Another hare, lurking on Hackney Road. By M@.
Another hare, lurking on Hackney Road. By M@.
A crane on Hanbury Street, courtesy of cafedereves.
A crane on Hanbury Street, courtesy of cafedereves.
Image/Cafedereves
Image/Cafedereves
This hare on Curtain Street, since supplanted, was rather special. When viewed from the left you see a hare, when viewed from the right, you see some hare's innards. Image by Viditu under a Creative Commons license. Go check out his other views of this work.
This hare on Curtain Street, since supplanted, was rather special. When viewed from the left you see a hare, when viewed from the right, you see some hare's innards. Image by Viditu under a Creative Commons license. Go check out his other views of this work.
A pig on Bacon Street, near Brick Lane. Image / Cafedereves.
A pig on Bacon Street, near Brick Lane. Image / Cafedereves.
Yeah, forget the argument about grey squirrels supplanting the reds. It's the black-and-whites you want to watch out for. Image by M@.
Yeah, forget the argument about grey squirrels supplanting the reds. It's the black-and-whites you want to watch out for. Image by M@.

We've all played the pub game: name 10 famous Belgians. Jean-Claude Van Damme, Poirot...Papa Smurf?* One name currently knocking on the door of that exclusive club is Roa, an incredibly talented street artist from Ghent.

Roa's style is distinctive, to say the least. If you've seen a giant, moody animal painted onto brickwork, you've seen a Roa. His black and white menagerie extends across Shoreditch and Hackney, as our map shows. Squirrel, hares, a strange weasel thing, assorted birds, some with their innards on show, other simply bones. It's a dazzling, disturbing, damn fine collection that deserves mainstream acclaim.

Most of these pieces went up in spring this year, to coincide with Roa's solo show at Pure Evil gallery. Although a few have since been removed or tagged over, plenty remain. Roa's pieces take many hours to paint and are usually done with permission, which should help their longevity. You can learn more about his London work on the Spitalfields Life site.

With special thanks to Stephanie Sadler of the wonderful Little London Observationist for some of the images; see individual shots for credits.


View Roa street art in a larger map

Have we missed any? Let us know in the comments and we'll add 'em to the map. Green = still there, red = gone, yellow = not sure.

Previously: Stik.

*To be fair to our low-lying neighbours, there are quite a few notable Belgians if you dig deep, including the President of the European Council.

Last Updated 01 June 2016