COPE 2 X OBEYNovember 7, 2013
New York’s notorious graffiti bomber, Cope2 has teamed up with his buddies at OBEY to bring you the UO exclusive OBEY x Cope2 Takeover. Inspired by his NY street art and friendship with OBEY’s Shepard Fairey. Our pals across the pond at Urban Outfitters US sat down with the man himself to find out what the collab is all about. Check it.
UO: How did this new collection with Obey come about?
C2: Steve from Obey approached me during Art In The Streets in the private opening reception at the L.A. MOCA and I was like, “Sure why not? Let’s make it happen.” And we just kept in contact through email concerning the project and we’re here now and it looks amazing. I love it—another great Obey and COPE2 collaboration.
UO: How did you meet Shepard Fairey?
C2: I’ve known Shepard Fairey for a while now. We both were legendary characters in Marc Eckō’s video game called Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure! So we’ve always spoke about doing something together which I though was a brilliant idea and we finally came together and making it happen.
UO: Who were your peers/collaborators coming up as a writer?
C2: It was the NYC subways that got me into being a graffiti writer and my cousin who also tagged his name up in the late ’70s. Man, those subway cars had some amazing art painted on them and I always wanted to put my name on them as well and see my name “COPE2″ roll through all the five boroughs of NYC. They were like moving museums of art. What a great time; good memories.
UO: When you first started showing in galleries what was the transition like going from writing and painting on walls to creating work meant to be viewed in art shows?
C2: The Christie’s Guernsey Auction in 1999 in NYC was having a huge graffiti art sale and I was contacted by them to submit some pieces. I never really did my art on canvas, but I heard this was a huge thing so I submitted three paintings and two sold for a pretty good price. I was surprised, so that’s what pretty much got me started and going into the direction of doing galleries.
I was getting a bit too old to be painting on trains and walls and I’ve been really successful in doing so worldwide in galleries, museums, auctions and private collections.
UO: What outside of graffiti influences you?
C2: Just great energy, great people, good music, my partner, Indie 184, my kids, my family, good vibes, positive energy, and even negative energy sometimes can influence an artist on their work.
Click the image above and check out the COPE2 X OBEY collection.