The Art of Paul Don Smith one of Londons most prolific street artists

You don’t need to travel far in the East End of London to come across some work by the prolific Paul ‘Don’ Smith.

Known for his multi-layered stencil portraits, Don’s work is impossible to miss if you’ve spent any time in the Brick Lane area over the past few years. In fact, his works were some of the first I noticed when I first moved into the area a good few years ago now.

In fact this very blog pays tribute to the work of Don pretty much everyday. The blue avatar used as a logo is in fact a photograph of a piece he did on Redchurch Street in 2012. That image is actually supposed to be a pair of toilet rolls joined together so they look like a smiley face. Not his usual style admittedly but it must have had some impact.

A Paul Don Smith stencil fest on this building on the corner of Brick Lane and Buxton Street
A Paul Don Smith stencil fest on this building on the corner of Brick Lane and Buxton Street

His work itself is immediately accessible, often painting portraits of people in the public eye they are very easy to engage with. People understand what they are seeing with Don’s work, it is obvious and gives recognition, a gateway into the scene which helps people take notice and appreciate other art more.

So it seemed high time that I spent a bit of time taking a better look at some of his work especially as, over recent months, I’ve noticed a marked increase of his stencilled portraits in the area around Brick Lane.

Don is one of the artists who make the street art scene in the East End what it is. One of the artists who keep it going whilst big names from outside the city come and go, he’s one of the home crew that give the street art scene in the area life.

Harry Potter stencil street art by Paul Don Smith
Harry Potter stencil street art by Paul Don Smith

Speaking to the Little London Observationist blog back in 2013 he said that he had two identities, Paul ‘Don’ Smith, the commercial artist and ‘Don’ the graffiti artist. It’s the latter which the street art scene knows him as. “This is where I can do what I like” says Don in the interview “and I have to draw the line between the two. It’s my stuff, my own thing. I’ve been doing that for years”.

Paul Don Smith is a London based artist whose work can be seen around the Brick Lane and Shoreditch areas amongst others. An excellent interview with him can be found at the Little London Observationist or you could listen to some of his ‘Articulate‘ radio shows on Hoxton FM. The pictures in this article were taken on Saturday 8 August 2015 and are all were found around the Brick Lane area.

Paul Don Smith Brick Lane Gallery

Hanbury Street

Alexander and Bucephalus and The Rock with the remnants of an old work form Pyramid Oracle in the background
Alexander and Bucephalus and The Rock with the remnants of an old work form Pyramid Oracle in the background
Huggy Bear with other work from Endless
Huggy Bear with other work from Endless
A tribute to local man Terry Sue-Patt and what appears to be a homage to 'We are your friends' actress Emily Ratajkowski
A tribute to local man Terry Sue-Patt and what appears to be a homage to ‘We are your friends’ actress Emily Ratajkowski
Lewis Collins 'Who Dares Wins' tribute
Lewis Collins ‘Who Dares Wins’ tribute

Truman Brewery

Womack 'Reminds me baby' and Frankie Knuckles close to Rough Trade
Womack ‘Reminds me baby’ and Frankie Knuckles close to Rough Trade

Buxton Street

A Paul Don Smith stencil fest on this building on the corner of Brick Lane and Buxton Street
A Paul Don Smith stencil fest on this building on the corner of Brick Lane and Buxton Street
Judy Garland
Judy Garland
Zac Efron
Zac Efron
Leonard Nimoy as Spock
Leonard Nimoy as Spock
Harry Potter
Harry Potter
Loki
Loki
Nestorudi MIla
Nestorudi MIla

Cheshire Street

Malala
Malala

Brick Lane

Kiss tribute with some other work from Cranio
Kiss tribute with some other work from Cranio
'The Vision' by Don with existing work from Faith 47
‘The Vision’ by Don with existing work from Faith 47
Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro
Tom Hardy
Tom Hardy
Don's tag is the banker which looks like a tap.  Keep your eye out and you'll see these around
Don’s tag is the banker which looks like a tap. Keep your eye out and you’ll see these around
Inspiring City Logo by Paul Don Smith
Inspiring City Logo by Paul Don Smith

6 Comments

  1. How interesting. So that’s how you got your logo. I too really enjoy Don’s work. A lovely selection Stuart. btw – have you come across a Lawrence of Arabia type scene? I’ve seen a photo online but don’t think it mentioned where it was.

  2. Thanks 🙂 I do remember seeing a lawrence of arabia piece a good while back now though. It was probably around Brick Lane but I can’t remember they get updated so frequently 😛

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