Yes! A famous LA street artist put those cows on that bridge

by V1 Staff

Photo: Wild Life
Photo: Wildlife

Do you remember the "cows on that bridge" photos we posted a couple weeks ago? They were the most recent instance of a seemingly increasing trend of guerrilla street and river art. Well, the story behind them just got a lot more interesting.

The artist behind the sculptures was Wild Life, a street artist from Los Angeles who has gained some notoriety in a city known for its public art. And it turns out Wild Life – who remains anonymous to keep the focus on his art and due to his "career choice" – grew up right here in Eau Claire before moving to L.A. in 1992.

Under his given name, Wild Life is an artist working in the city, but he has garnered attention for his whimsical public sculptures (often working with LA artist Calder Greenwood), which have included deer, sun bathers and giraffes. The pair have made a mark on the Los Angeles art scene, even garnering a feature piece by the Los Angeles Times

Wild Life gave us a call this week to chat about his street art and the cows specifically. He was back home in Eau Claire visiting and had been inspired by the Nessie sculpture earlier this year and the sculpture tour in downtown and decided to contribute his own piece. He chose cows for the obvious cultural connection to the state and made them out of papier-mâché, with all the materials coming locally from Benny HaHa's and Menards. 

Wild Life said he enjoys street art because it offers an "enormous opportunity to express yourself" and you're able to point out aspects of an environment that people may not notice on a daily basis. 

As for any advice he'd give to aspiring street or guerilla artists,Wild Life keeps it simple: Do something good. He offers this anecdote along with it:

"I come out of my loft into the alley and some guys are tagging a dumpster. Now I'm like, "Dudes, go ahead and tag if you're tagging, if that's what you're doing." Well they started running and I'm like "Dudes, what are you running for? I can't even read that crap!" So my advice is if you're going to do something, do something good. There's plenty of people doing crap out there and very few doing something that's provacative, interesting stimulating – causing people to talk about it long after it's gone."

 

Photo: Wild Life
Photo: Wildlife
Photo: Wild Life
Photo: Wildlife
Photo: Wild Life
Photo: Wildlife
Photo: Volume One reader Lori
Photo: Volume One reader Lori
Photo: Volume One reader Lori
Photo: Volume One reader Lori