There’s very few magazines relating to graffiti that I actually read. Sure, there are graffiti magazines out there, few can compete with Very Nearly Almost – with plenty of quality eye candy and decent in-depth interviews with artists etc.. VNA has been going for 16 glorious issues now. Its a really pleasant read, sitting comfortably in a5, and printed in matt stock for that luxury vibe.
They approached me to answer a few questions a several issues back, but with all the usual suspects’ interviews for shows and big changes in my schedule, it only came to fruit for issue 16. Speaking with Roly on the blower whilst holidaying in Barcelona, he had a great line of enquiry. He actually asked some really good questions relating to the reasons why I ended up painting in the first place, stuff I never even connected for a long time–my passion for computers at a very early age, being raised in middle earth and my time painting alongside Desire & Goldie. The interview went really well, and there are more than a few good quotes spread through the article.
“My life’s changed a lot as a direct result of my aerosol use, it’s like a drug”
Then came the challenge of finding & resourcing the imagery to support the interview. It had been 12 years since a (inter)national publication had interviewed me. My work has been changing quite a bit over the last 5 years, so I had to show off some of the newer work. Most of the digital archive was back in London, 700 miles away. Fortunately I had a fair amount of recent material, from my work with mathematics and perspective, so it was a great opportunity to show the ‘Cover your tracks’ 3d design (which was a prototype sketch for Brixton indoor market).
Where were you painting in those days?
Back then you couldn’t afford a train ticket; you’d get a coach down to Bristol with a bag of paint. Because I worked for Walsall Youth Arts, there were only three sites supported by the local authorities in the country; Barton Hill, Selly Oak and Walsall. The one in Walsall was called The Paddock, which was a sunken foundation for a block of flats. So we came up with the idea to take it over and develop it as a painting site on submission of all this bureaucracy. I became the caretaker of the place, so journeys to Bristol and Selly Oak became the backbone of my graffiti world.
Extract published HERE