Original Artist

Paint out of bounds

Meet Shida, prince of the Aussie street art scene. Known for his powerful murals and a tendency towards expansive spaces (read: the bigger the wall, the better), this artist's unique style has earnt him a following that we are more than happy to be a part of. His career was born of his own creative instincts and a wicked drive when he set out on a massive international tour to leave his distinctive expressions on as many different walls in as many different countries as possible. His works determinedly merge order and chaos, leaving viewers the world over completely wide-eyed. Now, with his first debut solo show 'Higher Planes' launching last week at Sydney's The Tate Gallery, Shida took the time to talk to us about his otherworldy creations.

“I love the idea that my art represents me, and gives me an omnipotent presence in places I've been.”


Shida reaches for bigger spaces in order to allow for more energy and physicality to be tranfered into his work.

Interview with Shida
Interview with Shida
You've made a name for yourself on the Aussie street art scene - what sets you apart from other artists?

Hard to say without blowing my own horn. Australia has a very strong scene and I have so many motivated and ambitious peers. One of my biggest strengths is the ability to do very large-scale work without any support or funding.

Walk us through your creative process. What drives you towards large scale walls?

I find that scale intensifies form. I enjoy working large because it allows for you to paint more physically and put a lot of energy into the work. Painting big also leaves room for imperfection - what is important is how the mural comes together, rather than its fidelity.

Your artistic career kicked off with a massive international tour which spanned four continents, what was the best part for you?

My first world tour was definitely a highlight in my career. It was intense - from mountains in Cambodia, to favelas in Brazil. From highs, painting a 25 x 60 metre wall in Poland, to lows like jail. I can't wait for the next one.

Your debut Sydney show, 'Higher Planes' launched last week.Tell us about the lead up and preparation?

It's been a few months in the making, but everything has gone smoothly so far. I've focused primarily on composition & balance in my work for this show, moving away from my usual tendency to create overly intricate paintings. I'm very pleased with my current direction.

What satisfies you more as an artist - producing the work, or seeing other people experience it?

I love the idea that my art represents me, and gives me an omnipotent presence in places I've been. The production is often a challenge, but I'm motivated when I see myself improving.

How important is originality to your art?

I believe I have a distinct visual style, but also admit I am constantly influenced by the work of others. I tend to appropriate or reinterpret certain stylistic elements I like, and if they work, they become cemented in my repertoire.



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Article by Georgia Freney for Stoli Australia



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