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October 8, 2014

1LOVEADL exhibition

Art comes in endless shapes and colours. Sometimes it comes in the form of a young professional runner who operates under a pseudonym taken from The Street’s debut album.

  • Words: Brendan Cooper

Gabriel Cole is a 22-year-old professional runner, but he’s known as Pirate Material in the art world.


1LOVEADL opens this Friday, October 10 at Tooth & Nail from 6pm – 10pm with DJ sets from Fisherman’s Friend and Milkpaste and a yet-to-be-revealed secret theme.

Recently, he competed in the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, the 2012 Summer Paralympics, and the 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships in France, where he won a silver medal. So he’s fast – real fast. Currently studying design at University, he’s also making a name for himself as a visual artist, which qualifies him for the “overachiever” label.

CityMag spoke with him ahead of upcoming exhibition 1LOVEADL, where he and collaborator Henry Stentiford will be immortalising the city and its characters in a series of new works.

“[Pirate Material is] a reference to The Streets… it’s a reference to a pivotal point when I was younger when I decided I wanted to take some independence, and explore myself more,” says Gab. “To me, the way I reference the idea of Pirate Material is like the inner boy side of everyone… not letting go of the inner childhood ideas and inhibitions.”

The Pirate Material art style is modern, vivid and progressive. Works include dramatic splashes of colour, 2D visuals, and thought provoking words; and the canvas can be anything from a piece of paper, to a skateboard deck or a t-shirt.

“My painting style is… quite childish in content and the way it looks, but it’s more an adult and technical approach in the way it’s painted and the difficulty to it,” says Gab.

Previosuly, Gab has worked with RHD Store to showcase his own clothing designs, and a bunch of very cool hand painted skateboard decks. Fro 1LOVEADL he’s collaborating with long time friend Henry Stentiford. Both artists are approaching the exhibition as more an event, rather than jusr an art showcase.

“We want to hold a bit of a party, so we’ve got a few Adelaide DJs and might do a secret theme on the night,” says Gab. “We’re trying to really to put on a party… get a crowd that isn’t so much an art crowd, try and broaden it to people who are our age – early twenties.”

The pair shared a similar artistic education, but respectively produce quite different works.

“We are being quite conscious of our styles in terms of not trying to replicate anyone else. It’s going to be quite bright, some of Henry’s stuff is quite provocative, whereas mine’s really bright and driven by human emotions and stuff like that.”

Art is hard enough as it is, and we can imagine that trying to do something different in the art scene just multiplies the difficulty tenfold, so we’re curious as to how Gabriel gets inspiration for Pirate Material.

“I was more inspired by fashion when I was younger, because my parents weren’t so much into art. I’ve got more of an eye for colour and design references…[Henry] is a really good illustrator…he’s got a really good imagination.”

The young artists have separate works, but have saved something special to launch at the event.

“We’re going to do one t-shirt together that kind of signifies a half streetwear approach and something that represents Adelaide and fuses the two together,” says Gab.

“We just wanted to have a show together as friends, and also something that signifies a certain pride of being from Adelaide, and being an Adelaide kid. The way he [Henry] would describe it is like your first love – where you’re from.”


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