KENMO Graffiti / Performance / Artist


No More War!

I painted this piece during the night onto january 15, 1991, with two friends from school. I was sixteen years old and it was the night before Bush senior launched the gulf war.
We worked hard in that incredibly freezing night. We brought a big ladder from my friend´s place, which was close-by. Later he had to get us a thick candle from home to unfreeze the spraycans, cause they actually froze in!
In the middle of our mission we got disturbed by the senator of the interior in our city-state Bremen, who was a neighbour of my friend. He recognized my friend, greeted and asked what we were doing there. My friend told him, and he nodded and left the scenery without complaint.
Next day it was there to see for the whole school, right at the front door. Everybody saw it as we were all meeting outside to start the huge protest march against this gulf war. And about everybody knew it was us, including the teachers. But in this case, instead of investigation, we had silent acknowledgement!
It´s been the biggest protest we had seen in those years.

Under it, you see an "EZ" I made in 1990, with same friend 'Menace' doing the background. Must have been one of the first ever pieces with the name Kenmoe (with a second "e" then), and of course, early piece of mine generally. For some reason, I was never properly satisfied with it. Then it got crossed anyway, and then my friend and crew-mate Salomon aka Scez (and many other names until the later Keno), went over it with another guy, apparently first in an attempt to fix it, but then somewhat fucking up and crossing it even more, seemingly finding it all funny. I wasn´t convinced it was funny, and wasn´t sure of the honesty in terms of having wanted to fix it, but didn´t really say anything.
Such were the issues with him and me at times, but he clearly has (king-)status in the scene for good reason. I hope you´re in a better place now, Salomon! He died in early 2005.



Today I painted a wall together with Hek and Fakt. It was freezing and we had a shower of snow, but at least it wasn´t raining like all the last days. When I asked myself what to paint, I found I wanted to express emotion, specifically rage! Since this is an often suppressed and denied emotion, I think it´s good to get to know ourselves on this level and work on safely expressing it and releasing the charge involved - thus to create a safer world for all of us!
I felt it was just right to work with these bright and dark shades of red, plus using the cold cyan for the outlines. The blue in the background has already been there. The red symbolizes blood and also the root chakra, where much rage is located. The cold cyan outlines make me think of metal, they symbolize heartless borders of suppression aswell as the sword 'defending' your borders on the outside in a rage. It felt good to do all these strokes without being bound in the average idea of having to do very clear and clean outlines to my piece. The charge releases into the ground via the arrows...


Summer 1993

In the summer following the contest I had a good time travelling around a bit and painting a lot. I think I never painted as much as I did in that time. I was still a teenager and it felt just right. Life seemed easy for a while.
I went to Munich with a friend and I was invited to paint in Dresden, where I went with my new friends from Hamburg.From there we moved straight forward to Itzehoe, where a big graffiti happening took place at a huge industrial area that was permitted to be painted everywhere. This area then became the biggest Hall of Fame in northern Germany for more than a decade before it was torn down finally.
And I went to Hamburg lots...


Freak 1990

This is one of my first pieces. I did it together with my best friend at school times. Another friend of us wanted his room painted and he chose the word "Freak"...


TSW Hit 1991

I did this piece at the main entrance of my school in 1991 together with Salomon aka Scez aka Keno (who died in 2004) and another guy who painted just for a short time. I made the "TSW" and the "Hit" while Salomon made the characters and the "1991". The other guy did a helper job I think.