The influential Melbourne-based studio Everfresh has played a major part in driving the rise of street art in Australia. Everfresh has gained great notoriety in the city of Melbourne with a large collection of public paintings and murals. The National Gallery of Australia has acquired works from it’s influential members. The studio is now gaining a reputation in the gallery and collecting scene. Everfresh counts among its members some of most respected, innovative and widely recognised underground artists in this country.
For those not acquainted, who and what is Everfresh?
Everfresh is a studio based in Melbourne that was put together by a handful of street artist & Vandals back in 2003. It now has about 9 people who call this place there second home. Sync, Phibs, Makatron, Tooth, Reka, Meggs, Prizm, Wonderlust and myself (Rone).
A few of you are originally from other parts of Australia, what's the appeal of Melbourne?
Many of us had been here for a few years before we really got into what we are doing now. We all have different reasons really but I think we all want to stay here because Melbourne is such an amazing city for art & culture. Plenty of places to paint, drink beer and see live music...
With pieces in the national gallery and street art now a tourism draw card, is street art still a dirty word?
Not in my mind it isn't, but if you call it vandalism it tends to raise a few concerns.
I've known of Phibs work since I was a young teen in the early 90's. Whats the age spread of Everfresh?
Yeah I think Phibs would have be the grand elder of the studio but I think it would be fair to say we were all born between '75 to '85.
Are you all legal artists?
Kind of… We all sell or paint artworks in a legitimate way but we all still remain under aliases due to the fact we don't always play by the rules.
What kind of security concerns does that raise for you guys and the studio?
Well we don't actually do anything illegal at the studio, so there is no worry there. It's only when paint spreads out on to the street we have to step cautiously.
What does a typical day in the studio involve?
Coffee, paint, beer and glue.
I haven't seen many crews as commercially viable as you guys. Is it a necessity these days?
We present ourselves as an organisation but in actual fact we are just a bunch of guys who sometimes paint together. Every now and then we deal with corporates but that is more on a individual level (e.g., Phibs & Absolute Vodka, Meggs & Stussy etc)rather than Everfresh as an organisation dealing with a corporate. The book would be the only thing we have done as a group that actually has us all involved with a large company.
I've seen pics of the upcoming 'Blackbook' - it looks amazing. Can you tell me about it.
It should be out Mid to Late this year, It will be about 240 pages on the artist of Everfresh. It looks at the work both on and off the street. Most of the photos in the book have been held back from publishing on the net or other media so we could save them for this book so it won't be a pile of stuff everyone has seen before. Meggs (houseofmeggs.com) is designing the book from the studio and we have had Josh Robenstone (www.joshrobenstone.com) shooting photos for the book over the last few years. We will also be releasing a signed limited edition hardcover which you will have to get from us direct rather than your usual book store.
I'm always impressed how active you guys are in the art scene. Can you tell me about the exhibition Letterheads.
Letterheads is put together by Alex Mitchell from Nice Produce (www.niceproduce.com) and Reka (www.rekaone.com) from the studio. It was done once before a few years ago but this year they have gone all out in getting an amazing list of local and international artist together. It is definitely a labour of love as those guys, they put a lot of time into these shows for pretty much zero financial return. So I hope people appreciate how lucky we are have such shows in Australia.
What other projects are on the go?
We are working with Alex Mitchell on a gallery that is due to open in March. It won't be an Everfresh gallery even though a few of the artist may eventually show there, it is more about bringing in international artist hoping to give Melbourne a bit of attention on an international art level.