Slaven Kosanovic, better known as Lunar, is a Croatian graphic and street artist, philosopher and interdisciplinary person; coming to both music and art as a child, Lunar entered what would become a career as an artist in 1989 when he first picked up a spray paint can. Thirty years later, he is a unique living witness and participant in graffiti’s evolution since then as both a subculture and an art form, and the transformations of graffiti, hip hop, and electronic music subcultures in supporting one another towards their current mainstream popularity.
Lunar has always been pushed by curiosity, discovery, and creativity. Around the time he realized he probably couldn’t make it as a paleontologist or natural scientist, a la David Attenborough — his childhood dream — Lunar was also fascinated by graffiti, hip hop culture, and discovering and collecting every possible form of music that he could find. Entering the world of graffiti was a way for Lunar to assert the other, non-scientific side, of his identity as an interdisciplinary artist, to make sense of the world and find a place in it. As he began painting and establishing his network throughout Croatia, he was inspired by painters and musicians from other cities and countries who were building their lives in pursuit of the most idealistic dreams; by the early 1990’s Lunar was painting with them and friends throughout Europe, while offering them insider knowledge of where and how to paint in Croatia, and places to stay when others came to Eastern Europe.
Lunar describes street cats as confident, cheeky, independent, and symbolic of the streets; he also pulled his first artistic inspiration from his cat, Jinx. His artistic career, built largely around continual reinvention of his Catso character, has also been much like that of a street cat: charting his own path, making his own rules, and constantly pushing his boundaries of creativity. Thus, by the mid-1990’s, in seeking to expand beyond graffiti and nomadism, and to push the limits of his own creativity, Lunar entered a career in graphic design (while continuing graffiti); recently, he has also started hosting his own national-level radio show in Zagreb and DJing, both as a way of sharing his passion and excitement for hip hop and electronic music that has always inspired and propelled him as an artist.
Lunar’s constant search to discover and learn from other peoples’ experience, perspectives, and creative methodologies has led him to create art on every continent, and to be included in global graffiti publications including Graffiti world-Street art from 5 continents, 100 European graffiti writers,World Piecebook, Street art & Graffiti Europe, Street Art Graffiti Guide Paris, Graffiti Planet, Style is a Message, Painted Walls Havana, Munich Walls, Street Art Amsterdam, Street Art Zagreb, 400ml, The Book of Tags, and Cinco — 5 Years of Calle Libre. Beyond the world of graffiti, Lunar’s work and ability to independently turn creativity into a successful career have also earned him features in Playboy, Forbes, Backspin, DJ Mag, Stylefile, Graphotism, Xplicit Grafx, Bomber, Urban Roots, and Code Red, and invitations to speak at TEDx Zagreb 2015 and CreArt Encounter 2019 in Aveiro, Portugal.
Lunar’s new book “From Zagreb with Love” is hotly anticipated as one of the first histories written of graffiti as a clandestine, global, multidisciplinary art movement in Eastern Europe, which also maps its parallel development with rap and electronic music, written from the inside by one of its first practitioners. “From Zagreb with Love” will be launched at QRU in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, in collaboration with Street Art Museum Amsterdam, on 16 August 2019.