Sleepy Street Art

A Fanksy Original

Have you seen the faces?

Monochromatic faces appeared around Finchley in recent months.

These sad (some might say enigmatic) faces are spray-painted onto disposable objects.

Abandoned mattresses, sheets of plywood, and discarded furniture have had the artistic treatment.

And this week – the first installation with text, exhorting us to SLEEP ON IT.

The works are hard to define. Not quite graffiti, not formally public art, but something to make us smile when we pass by. It’s a very different style to Ben Wilson who creates art out of discarded chewing gum in Muswell Hill.

Where are they?

The beating heart of this project lies around Finchley Central station (see what we did there, with the subtle mattress reference?). There are installations along Station Road, Lichfield Grove, extending up Dollis Park.

The work has also radiated towards Henley’s Corner and Squires Lane. If you’ve seen any installations further afield, do let us know.

What does it mean?

A Classic Fanksy

Street art has an ephemeral quality. Our local artist creates thoughtful, site-specific installations that leave no permanent mark.

Is the work a meditation on impermanence, a commentary on our throwaway society?

Is the artist asking us to think about the circular economy? How might we recycle and reuse, rather than discard?

Or do these faces invite reflection on the quiet struggles in our community?

Repetition has emerged as a hallmark of the work. We see the same face. Perhaps an artist’s signature, despite the anonymity?

Who is Fanksy?

We’ve been calling her/him/they Fanksy (Finchley’s Banksy). We’d love to hear your suggestions for other names.

While we respect the artist’s anonymity, the work has a controlled, skilled hand. It seems more adult than teenager.

And the one with text has a typographical sophistication that implies maturity.

We’re not looking to find Fanksy.

Artists need solitude to do their best work.

But we are curious about their goals and message…

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