-ALO- Urban Expressionist

Alo (Aristide Loria) has bridged 130 years of Art History both through his Art and his personal story. Often called the ‘Urban Expressionist’, Alo’s muses speak silently from their poised positions on the street. Discovering these paintings with their intricacy and detail, tucked in between the buildings or doorways of East London, is like stumbling across a portrait that could be found in the National gallery though they are not framed in gold but rather bricks and mortar.

Alo has brought Fine Art into an urban context in a deliberate move to make it accessible to a wider audience. He paints using traditional methods, in the dead of night and often at great risk to his own personal safety. Primarily a studio-based painter, Alo uses the same techniques for his indoor and outdoor creations, avoiding spray cans at all costs. Painting on buildings is illegal in the UK and it is widely known that very few of Alo’s Street pieces are painted with permission and he is not paid for his creations. This practice has gained him much respect on the scene but also means you can walk around the streets of London, New York, Paris and Berlin and see his paintings untouched.

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‘Grace’ is a comprehensive collection of unseen paintings that have been created over the course of a few years and a unique insight into his time spent in London and Paris. Using his trademark language of pattern and colour, this repertoire of portraits captures the essence of the everyday people that have inspired him during this time.

BSMT Gallery

-ALO- Biography

Since 1997, the previous little know world of “Urban Art” has become not just main strem in the UK but big business. Many artists make a full time living from adorning derelict walls and building sites with their creations, but one Italian artist is creating quite the storm in east London with hs quirky fine art style and fascinating portraits of people he calls London’s unseen.
Unlike the majority of street artists, who build-up their reputation on the underground scene first, Alo definitely hasn’t followed the rules. Determined to make fine art accessible to the masses, Alo paints using traditional methods (mixed with his own mixed media technique) in the dead of night and often at great risk to his own personal safety. Primarily a studio-based painter, Alo uses the same techniques for his indoor and outdoor creations, avoiding spray cans.
Inspiration comes from his beloved Shoreditch, where Alo studies his surroundings and uses fellow Londoners as muses. His art tells stories of those who too often become invisibile in the modern world. The homeless, immigrants, prostitutes – people who faces complex challenges and struggles but can feel ignored.
No stranger to hardship, Alo’s motivation to paint was evident from a young age where he was inspired by the great expressionists and their ability to comunicate more effectively through art than anything else. Alo moved from Italy to London in 2010 and arrived with literally the clothes on his back. He had a friend who lived in a squat in North London and based there, with several others, struggled to make ends meet and find employment. Only by doing a variety of jobs (everything from working in bars to handing out the Evening Standard at the tube stations, eventually surviving unemployed and help by the jobseeker allowance) was Alo finally able to take a brake and obtain enough income to dedicate time to develop his projects.
An accidental feminist, women also inspire Alo’s work and will be heavily featured in his upcoming solo show at the Saatchi gallery in May 2020. He describes his female characters as elegant and timeless and is fascinated by women abilitiy to express themselves non-verbally. His studio works continue to go from strength to strength and the exhibition marks a new phase in a career which has taken him a long way from home. The residents of East London should count themselves very lucky to have him.

Saatchi gallery

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Alo is self -taught and paintings are not deliberately designed to be politically controversial but are painted to make art accessible and comunicate individual stories. Alo doesn’t take any payment for street art (unlike many others), which has not only gained him much respect on the scene but also means you can walk around the streets of London, Paris, New York and Berlin and see his paintings untouched. He is something of an underground legend in East London and even has a cocktail named after him at one bar.
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Painting on buildings is illegal in the UK, unless you have the permission of the owner, but with hundreds of urban works to date, Alo knows about taking risks. He has been threatened, arrested and once spent a night in a police cell, all for the love of his craft. On the flip side, many building owners welcome the prestige and attention that is work brings and Alo is determined not to let society stand in the way of what he believes is a fundamental right of expression.

-ALO- Career

ALO is an Italian artist based in London since 2011. A painter with an highly recognisable style who has developed his work mainly in studio and in the street. His first urban artworks appeared first in Italy, then mainly in London, Paris, Berlin and New York.

The artist describes his style as ‘Urban Expressionism’.

He describes his work as a kind of rebus, where the viewer has the solution clear in front of his eyes, but on the other end not enough clues in order to solve it.

ALO is an artist who paints on every surfaces, from canvas to wood board, using the same technique on walls as well. He doesn’t feel part of the so called street art movement, since his street work is a simplified version of his studio paintings, which is his main artistic work.

He paints both on canvas and on external walls with brushes, acrylic and mixed media, mixing painting with a mixed media technique.

His outside work is never done under payment or permission. ALO’s philosophy on painting on public walls is that art made on public walls has to be for free and for everybody.

He is mainly focused on being a bridge between the underground culture and the fine art world.

He currently lives and works in London.


ALO works since 2014 with the Saatchi gallery, he had two solo shows with the Saatchi and is going to have the third one in 2020.

The artist has been included in several auctions like Artcurial and Tajan in Paris, where the artists spent one year in 2017, having a solo show with the gallery “Le Cabinet d’Amateur” in Bastille.

ALO has also collaborations with other galleries like the BSMT in London.