Well this recording came off the back of a really nice phone call I received earlier this year.. I first met Insa in early 2004, he had a show in Brighton and visited the gallery with from what I remember Anie, our shared acquaintance.. That year has turned out to be a very important year for Insa, wasn’t too bad for me either actually, but in 2004 Insa stated to paint his iconic heels.. 15 years ago.. geesuss that felt fast! So, the reason for the call, Insa Studios were making a film about 15 years of the heels and they wanted me to interview Insa on it and do a little voice over…Check me out! Insa’s all was lovely, we chat maybe yearly by bi yearly, a few coffees over the years, couple of business explorations and he’d been listening to the podcast and thought I was the guy for the job.. We agreed to him doing the podcast also and I got on a main line train outta St Pancras on a sunny Thursday morning down to the south coast to visit Insa at his studio and get these recordings done.
What a space! Amazing, the first things I see are 2 Japanese custom vans, one of them a gorgeous mint green / teal like with a slight diamond dust filtering the colour ever so slightly.
Then over to some old used, battered, paint splattered large wooden doors which open into his space, the perfect space, high celling, open plan with a couple of metal pillars holding the floor above. There’s a work bench, 2 paint racks, a boat, a water ski thing, paintings, signs, toys, books, sofas, a fridge, filled with Insa branded beer.. There’s an office set to the left of the space, it was an office, but the walls were covered with paintings, parts of installations, his Chris Offlie High heels, gundam robots, mad toys.. We went upstairs, where he stores most of his collection of pieces, one of each piece of clothing he has put out, shoes, trainers, heels, magazines, lighters! He collects lighters.. and finally, a photoshoot room.. it is an amazing space; one you dream of.. especially for a graffiti writer, it was a full museum telling Insa’s story all in one space.. and I was about to get the words to go along with it.. We go in with Insa, I wasn’t expecting this depth of conversation, but I shouldn’t have been surprised, standing in his studio, seeing all these achievements over the years.. of course, it was gonna be full on.. We start with his early years, family, where he grew up, school life, his interests in those early years and the run up to him moving to London. So much happened there from teaming up with some of South London s finest, iconic trackside paintings and his trip to HMP Brixton. Insa goes into depth about the experience, thoughts and his change of attitude during that spell and then how the following years panned out. We talk about his family life, adventures with his partner Ethel, being a dad, traveling the globe and setting world records and producing work in the most unlikely situations for the strangest of clients. It’s a long conversation, inspiring at many stages, rammed packed end to end with an amazing human story.. Big up Insa for having me over, a real privilege to chat to such an iconic artist, especially after all the years I’ve watched.. Go check him @insagram whilst you listen.. it’s a great one.. and its his Birthday! go holla!