Since 2005, Eddie Colla‘s wheat pastes and stencils can be found throughout public spaces in the Bay Area, Los Angeles and Miami. Recently the prolific Oakland-based artist headed out to Detroit to sign his recent release Ambition, but what unfolded in his short trip was some impromptu magic. Read on to see Eddie Colla’s process photos working in Detroit and grab one of his latest hand-painted multiples mounted on found materials right here before they are gone…
1xRUN: Tell us a little about this series and how the idea and execution came about.
Eddie Colla: I came to Detroit to sign the “Ambition” etched metal plates I released last month. The plates were so heavy that it was cheaper for me to go to Detroit to sign them than it was to ship them to me. I had no plans of producing any work in Detroit. Detroit can be an inspiring place though because it endures.
1xRUN: Anything immediate you would like us to highlight about these pieces?
Eddie Colla: They weren’t planned, they weren’t necessary. They came out of an impulse or response to a place.
1x: Tell us a little bit about this image itself, is there a story behind it?
Eddie Colla: The image is part of an ongoing series of work I’ve been doing for years around this character. The text on the pieces translate as “I have a name but it doesn’t matter”. The character and the story all take place in Hong Kong. The images revolve around finding one’s place in the world, survival and the rejection of fate. As a young girl the character was told by her father “There is no fate, Fate is the result of a life unattended.”
1x: Let’s talk about the reference material for these pieces, was it chosen for a particular reason?
Eddie Colla: I put up about 200 of these images in Paris last year. Over time people would tag me in photos of the posters in various stages of decay and I always liked the image more as it continued to become more distressed. The weathered image, I felt, conveyed my ideas about the character more than the original pieces. I think being in a place like Detroit brought those ideas up about endurance and a rejection of fate to the forefront of my mind.
1x: When were these pieces created and how long did they take from start to finish?
Eddie Colla: These pieces were created between March 10th and March 14th 2016.
1x: What do you feel is unique about these pieces compared with some of your other work?
Eddie Colla: They weren’t created in my studio, I was outside of my bubble and that always affects the way I work.
1x: Describe this series in one gut reaction word.
Eddie Colla: Enduring.
1x: How was your time spent here in Detroit working with our team here at 1xRUN?
Eddie Colla: Inspiring.
1x: How does the rest of your year look?
Eddie Colla: I’ve been starting to collaborate with some different artists like James Swinson and Steve Javiel, which has forced me work and see in different ways. I plan on doin’ a few extended trips and I think the collabs will have a big influence on the work I do in public spaces.