No artist is more dedicated than the graffiti artist. They cannot cut their teeth on a canvas or a kiln. Their medium is the physical shell of civilisation and society itself, and their message often a comment upon it. And perhaps paradoxically so, entirely illegal.
And none know this more than legendary Ballarat graffiti artist, Cax One. After 15 years of simultaneous notoriety and anonymity, depending on which side of the law you fell on, Cax was eventually charged with over 200 offences as the central target of ‘Centaur’, a six-month operation into the Ballarat graffiti subculture.
But chaos is always the precursor to evolution. And for graffiti artists especially, a necessary evil. The years of perceived destruction, that ended in a corrections order, inspired a new era of constructive artistry that has Cax taking what he learnt on the streets and put it to use in galleries, workshops and events across the country.
Between gallery exhibitions, murals and commercial work, Cax spends significant time mentoring young artists and at risk youth in both Ballarat and Melbourne. His immense transformation has been documented in a short film by Michelle Dunn, and his work has featured in Inside Street Art and Street Art: Australia.