London’s East End has to be one of the most cool neighborhoods not just in London, but probably Europe. Shoreditch has historically been a popular hipster hangout and though much of that has moved into new areas, Shoreditch is still pretty damn cool. This is the same area where the legendary Brick Lane is located. Long an area for immigrants, artists, bohemians and anyone who didn’t fit into the compressed confines of central London, the East End has a reputation for “unusual” and “quirky.”

And where there’s creativity and class systems, there’s very often expressions of that on the city walls. Shoreditch and much of East London has long been a place to find amazing works of graffiti and street art. Those pieces both commissioned and thrown up under cover.

This piece, however, is relatively new. In June, the Puerto Rican artist Alexis Diaz put up this mural of an elephant-octopus. His works are characteristic of highly detailed animal hybrids. It’s so easy to get lost in the mesmerizing details of his work, but then taken as a whole, it’s equally fascinating. I can’t decide if they’re best viewed from up close or from down the street.

Either way, you can view more of Alexis Diaz’s work on his website.

Shoreditch mural by Alexis Diaz

Elephant Octopus

Shoreditch is one of London’s most dynamic neighborhoods with a lot of vibrant street art. You’ll find many street art tours running daily, many of them on and around Brick Lane. But for those that want a real taste of the neighborhood’s alternative culture, consider staying in a hostel or hotel. Use to do a meta-search of hostel prices from a variety of booking sites, and check their London directory for neighborhood filters. Look for places near to the Shoreditch overground station to be right in the epicenter of “cool.”

Looking for a place to stay? I use which has some of the best hotel deals in Europe and Asia. Please note some posts do make me some money but I never sacrifice my integrity in exchange for a favorable review. Read the full disclosure policy.


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  1. Pingback: An Eating London Food Tour (Or, How I Got Reacquainted with East London) : Indefinite Adventure

  2. It appears as though you may have just inspired Shaun to get yet another tattoo. <3

    • Awesome! You should also take a look Alexis Diaz’ other mystical creatures then ;)

  3. After my first trip to London I said I wouldn’t mind if I never went back again. Of course I did go back again because I have loads of friends there, and one of them who was determined to make me like it brought me on a graffiti tour of Shoreditch. She melted my heart towards London just a little bit that day :)

    LOVE this piece!

    • Adam

      Oh I’m so glad to hear that Alex! It’s funny how few tourists end up making it out to Shoreditch. A real shame considering how cool and exciting it is over there!

  4. I really don’t like London but I’ve never seen this so maybe I’m hanging out in the wrong end of town.

    • Adam

      You definitely are Ayngelina! It’s all about East London!

  5. Wow, fantastic art work. I can’t imagine being that talented!

  6. Rebecca

    I used to live in this area, I love it! such a cool, hip arty place

    • Adam

      Definitely one of the coolest areas in London!

  7. Pasquale

    I was there while Alexis was completing the Mural. It’s AMAZING!

    • Adam

      Oh wow – that’s really cool Pasquale. Did you happen to get any photos of him working on it?! I’d be really curious to see the method behind it. It’s just so stunning!

  8. This is pretty cool. Although I’d hate to walk past it on a dark night after a few too many beers! I’ll keep an eye out when I’m back in London

    • Adam

      Definitely check it out Joshua – plus there’s plenty of other amazing street art in the area as well. I’m fairly certain there isn’t a blank wall in Shoreditch.

  9. That mural is so cool, i was in Shoreditch a week ago, made a note of where it is not to go and see it properly next time! :)

    • Adam

      Hope you find it on your next visit to Shoreditch, Ross. Let me know if you do!

      • I will do Adam, I will be back down that way in December, it kinda reminds me of some of the cool artwork in Melbourne when I lived there! :)

        • Adam

          I’ve heard some great things about the street art in Melbourne!! Actually I just met Aussie artist R-O-N-E a few hours ago here in Berlin :)

  10. Latitude And Longitude

    What part of east London was this, I might want to see it:)

    • Adam

      It’s just off Brick Lane in Shoreditch. Shouldn’t be hard to find!

  11. Ryan

    This graffiti is so rad, love it. Such wild detail, thanks for the close ups too mate!

    • Adam

      Yep – I think this piece especially it’s important to see the level of detail put into it. So much street art goes up quickly and it’s done fast, but this was obviously a piece that took some time and fine brushes (and obvious skill).

  12. Very cool picture :)

  13. Holy Shit… this is an amazing piece of street art. Just wow… I love it like a lot. I’d frame this if I had taken the photo…lol. You know I love street art for a million reason, but the one that always gets me is how talented people are to create some amazing pieces. Like this one.

    • Adam

      Glad you found this impressive Jaime! Be sure to check out the artist’s other works too :)

  14. Love it.. Especially how the brickwork adds to the texture!

    • Adam

      I think that’s often an important part of street artists’ work as well – to adapt to the local surroundings.

  15. Cheryl Howard

    What a beautiful piece! Love it.

    • Adam

      Cheryl – you should definitely look at the artist’s other works. I think you’d love them as well!

    • Adam

      The details in this one really make it special, Casey!

  16. Gorgeous! It’s unusual to find street art that is so detailed and well thought out. Looking forward to seeing this one myself when I’m back in my hometown soon!

    • Adam

      Yep, Alexis Diaz’s style is vary particular and meticulous. I’m a big fan!

  17. Incredible imagery and very well rendered. This is a great find!

    • Adam

      Yes indeed Maria! I was really happy to stumble across it when walking around Brick Lane

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