Acclaimed Manchester-based street artist AkseP19 has been at it again, this time with a huge mural of honorary Manc Ariana Grande.

It has appeared as Manchester waits with bated breath for the Thank u, Next star to make an appearance ahead of her headline slot at Manchester Pride Live on Sunday.

Akse, who’s become well-known for his hyperrealist freehand portraits of pop culture icons, teased fans with a snapshot of the artwork online last night, fuelling speculation as to when the finished piece would make its appearance.

And now it has finally appeared on the corner of Chorlton Street and Aytoun Street, just outside Capital and Centric’s Kampus development and around the corner from the heart of Manchester’s Gay Village.

Huge Ariana Grande mural appears near Manchester's Gay Village I Love Manchester

The self-taught French Vietnamese artist has been in the street art world for a long time. He’s been painting since 1992, joining Pest’s P19 crew in 1993 and moving to Manchester in 1997, where he has lived ever since with his family.

This weekend’s Pride Live festivities see Ariana Grande return to Manchester for her first performance in the city since One Love Manchester, a benefit concert she hosted at Old Trafford in the wake of the Manchester Arena attack that raised £7.2m for those affected.

She was made an honorary Mancunian following her response to the devastating Arena attack, which took 22 innocent lives and saw hundreds more injured.

The Manchester Pride parade will pass the artwork tomorrow, before finishing on Fairfield Street.

Race you there.

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