After jail, the Indiana man turns into an artist often called “Kwazar” in Leisure

Now at the age of 39, Martin is a rising artist on the art scene known as Kwazar.

“I spent two birthdays in prison,” said Martin. “On my next birthday, I was sitting across from Tamika Catchings in her tea shop and talking about art.”

Martin says Catchings was like a “big sister” at this point.

Aside from his work at Catchings’ Tea’s Me Cafe, Kwazar has art at Lucas Oil Stadium and is currently working on a play for Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

He painted the only mural of George Floyd during the social unrest in downtown last summer.

In early 2021, Martin’s art was selected to sit at Monument Circle during the 2021 NCAA men’s tournament.

“That was amazing,” he said. “That was about six weeks with people seeing my name and taking pictures with my art.”

Martin jumps in medium from oils to aerosols. He says he enjoys the speed and brilliance of graffiti. He has experimented with painted woodcuts and even designed skateboards.

Martin recently dedicated a wall in his studio to the late rapper Earl Simmons, aka DMX, using spray paint. However, he dreams of seeing his graffiti and murals outside a building in the center.

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