Paper Labels - A Spray Paint Label Collection

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Paper Labels - a spray paint label collection by Kept One

Some 25 years in the making, I present my collection of the now largely defunct spray paint ‘paper labels’.

In the 90’s, long before the era of specialty made graffiti supplies, you’d paint with whatever you could come up on. My interest is of course in preserving my own history, as most of these are from cans I used. Now discontinued colours from various places and countries. Most were stolen, from gas stations in Sweden to Hardware shops in Minneapolis’s suburbs.

The variety of logos and types, the spread of the collection, became one of the most interesting things about it. The collection sat in a box for many years, and slowly paper labels disappeared from the market altogether.

To complete the project I peeled off a prized label that belonged the legendary Tie One. Leftover from an overnight paint session, shortly before his death. Spattered with silver, it includes his finger prints. I’ve soaked many stubbornly glued cans in pots overnight to peel the next day, this Tie label was the last to complete the collection.

Kept One (KIL, 640, THC, AKB, UE MF) is a controversial graffiti artist from the Bay Area, United States.

  • edition of 250
  • A4 landscape
  • hardcover
  • 96 pages (incl cover and endpapers)