Murals intended to raise the issues around the harassment of women have been painted on the old bank building in Bristol. Organised by Bristol Nights it is a project aimed at promoting the cities zero tolerance stance towards the issue. Three Bristol artists including Hazard One, Oli T and Emily Joy Rich have taken part and worked alongside Upfest to create the pieces.
The murals are part of a campaign to promote Bristol’s ‘Women’s Safety Charter‘. It’s something that is particularly a priority during the nighttime economy. A recent survey which prompted the campaign showed that 100% of women said they’d experienced sexual harassment in some form.
It’s Not OK
“I don’t think I know a single woman who hasn’t experienced sexual harassment in some shape or form” said artist Emily Joy Rich on her instagram. “It’s almost become part of a night out, which is so wrong”. Her mural on the side of the old bank building says ‘If it’s Unwanted it’s not OK’. The artist is known for her colourful and bright calligraphy.
On the front of the old bank building is a striking piece from Bristol local Hazard One. Hazard’s face is made up of many different women shown in a kind of patchwork way. Over the top she has painted the words ‘All Women Experience Sexual Harassment Call It Out’. Set against neon lights the words pop even more. The final piece on the old bank simply says ‘I’m Every Woman’ and is spread over two separate large walls. Painted by Oli T this is the message at the very heart of the campaign.
Call it Out
Carly Heath, Bristol’s Night-time economy advisor said “We’re inviting bystanders to call out unwanted behaviour. While empowering those working in the night-time economy to recognise and execute a zero-tolerance response to harassment in their venues and workplaces”.
Bristol Old Bank Murals Gallery
Emily Joy Rich
The Old Bank Building
The old Norwich Union and Bank of England building has been somewhat of an eyesore in Bristol for years. Only built in the 1960’s it was controversial at the time and only occupied for a few years. Situated at the edge of the historic Castle Park it nestles up against some altogether older ruins. The area was once at the centre of the old Anglo Saxon and Norman town. Suffering destruction during raids during World War II a lot of the subsequent development around the park turned it into a pleasant green space by the river.
The old bank building can be found between Bridge Street and High Street in Bristol. The murals were painted as part of a project with Bristol Nights in March 2022. They were visited on 29 May 2022. Participating artists were Hazard One, Oli T and Emily Joy Rich.