Local graffiti artist Scott Coleman, known as KAB101, will be the first graffiti artist to have a suburban laneway formally named in his honour. Honeysuckle Lane in Prospect will be officially co-named KAB101 Lane, marking KAB’s creative contribution to the City of Prospect since he began painting there 18 years ago.
“I feel very honoured to have my work formally recognised in this way,” said KAB.
A figurehead of Adelaide’s graffiti community, KAB started painting in Honeysuckle Lane, between Myrtle and Vine streets, in 1996 after asking a local resident whose wall backed onto the lane. Gradually he gained permission to paint the other walls and fences and it grew into a signature location for his work – spanning his artistic practice over time.
“In the lane I’ve been able to develop ideas without having to stress or go through too much formal negotiation, and focus on artform development, developing style and pushing contemporary ideas in an urban environment,” he said.
Those in the know already knew it as KAB’s Lane but the name will stick with a ceremony led by Prospect Mayor David O’Loughlin on Saturday 10 May where Honeysuckle Lane will get a dual title of KAB101 Lane. Supported by a $10,000 Public Art and Design grant from Arts SA, KAB has been repainting the laneway in his intricate script style for the past five months, in preparation for the weekend festivities.
“It’s a kind of poetry,” curator Annemarie Kohn said of KAB’s marking style. Ms Kohn suggested the co-naming of the laneway last year to Prospect Mayor O’Loughlin and the idea was unanimously endorsed by the council a few months later.
“When all his friends were tagging KAB didn’t like his own style of handwriting, so through his own critiquing he developed his calligraphic style.
“Everything he paints says something, depending on what he’s thinking at the time,” said Ms Kohn.
Of honing his own craft, KAB says: “The lane is a positive space for me to escape and do my thing. I can hang down there and paint for as long as I want, spend a lot of time on certain pieces so that I can get perfect clean line work. The different surfaces of the various laneway walls determine what kind of works go up. Full technical wildstyles go well on the flat wall, and the flutes of the shed suit blockbusters. The crusty part of the fence looks good with paint dribbling through with a signature that turns into wildstyle that turns into public style.”
In what is considered a world first, the formal act of naming a public lane after a graffiti artist is symbolic of the changing attitudes toward art created for the streets, said Ms Kohn. There is increasing recognition that street art is an “indicator of a progressive and vibrant city,” she said.
Photo of Kab 101 credit: Masika || Gallery credit: Unknown || Source