A Chat with Shida
Shida is a heavyweight of Australia's burgeoning street art scene, with dynamic murals, monumental in scale, spread across the east coast and internationally. He has ignited his career with a tour that spans four continents, and his ongoing success in the art world is testament to his relentless creative spirit. We caught up with him on the back of his latest, hand-finished print release to talk about his style and his recent travels.
Tell us about the image you’ve used for the current print edition.
Entitled "Entwine" it's a kind of round up of all my most recent subjects and new techniques. I had in mind to make it quite graphic and indicative of my style and focused in detail on the balance of the different elements. I will be hand-finishing each print individually.
Your work is known for it’s abstract style, tell us about how that has evolved from some of your earlier work.
My "style" of abstraction stems from my early street work. I used continuous lines in order to paint fast and make the most of a thin line once I got one going (they where hard for me in the beginning). It's evolved from that into my natural aesthetic. I often zone out while painting and when I focus again everything is still on course, it's quite organic.
How do you find adapting street work to smaller works on canvas or for exhibition?
I enjoy it, I almost feel like I'm adapting techniques from my exhibitions back into the street. I enjoy experimenting with different mediums and am always adding to my arsenal.
You spend a lot of time travelling and doing collaborations – what are some of your favourite recent experiences?
I'm writing this on my way back from The Hours, Neon Golden tour to Hong Kong. Such a dope, mega future city and kick ass time. Spent 4 days abseiling with TwoOne painting a 13 storey wall and the down time chilling it up in the VIP getting poured champagne. Back to the real world now haha.
How much of the characters that appear in your work are reflections of yourself?
If anything, they are reflections of those sublime and intense instances in life that you don't appreciate when they are happening. I'm a pretty emotional guy and that translates into my work. If I had to draw a comparison I'd mention how the characters I create are often beautiful while at the same time alien and menacing. I think my nature is quite duplicitous as well, I'm a romantic and total hedonist and at the same time an ironic piss taker.
What’s your art collection like?
Stored at my parents house. I'm not that possessive sometimes to a fault. I've got a few investments in there though!
What’s coming up for you in the near future?
I'm heading to New Zealand in October and am starting work on my first book over the new year.
~ Interview by Ben Frost