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Wire Art Hangs Out In City Heights

Wire art by Spenser Little hangs on a light pole in City Heights.
Matthew Bowler
Wire art by Spenser Little hangs on a light pole in City Heights.
Wire Art Hangs Out In City Heights
Wire Art Hangs Out In City Heights
Spenser Little makes art from wire. Eight of his sculptures, inspired by the community, are now hanging above light poles around City Heights.

Spenser Little is a self-taught wire sculptor who makes art from one continuous wire.

The City Heights Business Association hired Little to add his art to the community this summer.

He created eight large sculptures that represent people in the neighborhood. His theme: "You never know who will make your day.” Now hanging 40 feet above on light poles, each depicts someone Spenser came across in City Heights.

Speak City Heights is a media collaborative aimed at amplifying the voices of residents in one of San Diego’s most diverse neighborhoods. (Read more)

He jokingly calls his art “man knitting.”

“I’m blessed,” Little said. “That’s the key: I get to do what I love everyday. I get to come in here and make whatever I can think of and it’s so freeing. It’s the exact opposite of what I thought my life was going to be.”

Little worked in the biotech industry 11 years ago. He started making wire sculptures as a way to release stress, attaching his creations to street signs and poles. The wire art caught people’s attention over the years. They began leaving notes, asking Little if they could buy his work.

“The most happiness I’ve caused in random strangers ever in my life has been leaving them out on the street. It's almost, you know, the offering of the fruit at the foot of Buddha. It’s been this really pure positive thing,” Little said.

Little eventually left his corporate job to become a full-time artist. Today, he creates art in his warehouse studio in Barrio Logan.

“A lot of people always look at the more intricate ones and say, ‘Boy you must have a lot of patience.’ And my reply is, 'It doesn’t take patience do something you enjoy,'” Little said.

John Thurston, who lived in City Heights for more than 30 years, said he enjoys the additions.

“It’s finally bringing some brightness some esthetic to our neighborhood that’s been long been neglected,” Thurston said.

Judy Koss, who owns Judy’s Quality Family Childcare, says she can see Little’s work from her house on Wabash Avenue.

“I personally love it and I believe my children love it,” Koss said.

She said she believes the art inspires the children in her daycare.

“When they look up and they’re sitting on the porch and they see art, they get creative,” Kloss said. “They find sticks and they start doing all sorts of different stuff just by being able to see different types of art.”