Oldham Hopes Studio Store Carves a Niche
Highland Park residents Brad Oldham and Christy Coltrin are the masterminds behind Brad Oldham International Inc.
The husband-and-wife duo combines separate skill sets to create sculptures, jewelry, and architectural features.
But if you ask Oldham and Coltrin, they will say they’re in the business of telling stories through sculpture.
Take SkaterBIRD, for example. SkaterBIRD, created by Oldham, is perched on the 13th story of the building at 1200 Ross Avenue.
The 3,500-pound stainless steel sculpture oversees the heart of Dallas, visible from Woodall Rodgers Freeway, Ross Avenue, and Greenville Avenue.
For these two, SkaterBIRD is about boldly looking forward and taking leaps of faith.
“There was a time when Brad and I were looking at each other and going, ‘OK. What are we gonna do with our business?’” said Coltrin. “If we’re gonna do it, we’re going to put everything we have in this.”
Like their SkaterBIRD, the duo is blazing forward to its next chapter. Last October, the company said goodbye to its space in the Design District and set up shop on the ground level of 1200 Ross Avenue. With this new space, Oldham and Coltrin hope to offer more accessibility to fine artwork.
The new headquarters’ full-length windows provide a welcoming view, showcasing both large sculptures and smaller gift pieces. It provides workshop and retail space, offices, and a location for community events. In January, a McLaren P1 and a McLaren 650S Spider were displayed for a special occasion.
“We want to invite people down,” Oldham said. “Come explore a working artist’s studio. It’s a lot of fun to share what we do. When people walk through here, they are like, ‘Wow! I had no idea you did all of this.’”
Oldham is a nationally acclaimed artist and sculptor with works across the globe, as well as pieces that have come to define parts of Dallas. His $1.4 million sculptural series The Traveling Man, for example, has become an icon for historic Deep Ellum’s history and bright future. Oldham’s joy comes from seeing how works can affect a community.
“There’s lots of ways to share your life and story. This one is pretty rewarding,” Oldham said. “An 88-year-old woman wrote a poem about ‘The Traveling Man’ and sent that to us. People are in turn sharing their stories with us, and that’s what makes it fun.”
Meanwhile, Coltrin launched her first collection of gifts, Tiny Sparks, which are small, talisman-like pieces. Coltrin designed each piece and crafted the story behind each one. The price point on these tiny works of art is lower, as well as a few other pieces in the store, allowing buyers the direct access to an Oldham original and a piece of Dallas.
“We have sculpture and artwork around the city and we want this to be a real Dallas place,” Coltrin said. “You can come and get a gift that’s made here that has a story to it, but has a little bit of Dallas pride in it.”
With their new location, Oldham and Coltrin they hope to be apart of the fabric of the downtown neighborhood. Further, the couple wants to see their work in other locations across the city, state, and nation.
But, it all starts at 1200 Ross Avenue. Just look for SkaterBIRD, and he will lead you to them.