Cultural change like popular movements come and go in prominence, they ebb and flow like the tides. The zeitgeist of today Рa fad of tomorrow. But despite this apparent relentless turnover, the underlying sensation, the feeling and the grassroots passion behind each surge is still there, bubbling below the surface and drawing in those who are most predisposed to its cause.

Ipswich street art by Gus Eagleton
Artwork by Gus Eagleton

Music and Art

I think the arts and music subculture in Ipswich could be likened to that. Through the waining popularity of the cities heart, abandoned venues, mass closures, broken promises… there’s still music and art. Music and art are primordial in their the connection to humanity – so they will always be there, people have an urge to move and express themselves. Express their love, their joy, anger, frustration and fear. For other than nurture, what more powerfully than nature and our immediate environment create a context for life? The anchor of our physical domain shapes our souls and it does for some more exquisitely and relentlessly than others.

Ipswich street art by Fintan Magee
Artwork by Fintan Magee


So it’s amazing to see new life being breathed into the streets and for the Council to embrace street art and the positives it can bring to a town is really remarkable. Whilst detractors could say that a few pretty pictures on walls isn’t groundbreaking, I say it could also be a catalyst for the reemergence of a part of the city that many have long thought lost… its cultural soul.

By wearing our colours on our sleeves and spraying them with vibrant abandon on the city walls, perhaps we’re giving the green light to those who have that grassroots passion, we’re saying ‘you’re a part of the fabric of this place and your voices need to be a part of it’s future’. Time will tell.

Ipswich street art by Ash Taylor
Artwork and photo courtesy Ash Taylor

‘You’re a part of the fabric of this place and your voices need to be a part of its future’.