An Interview With Artist Black Brain

A lot of people inspire us at Dec 9th, from artists to writers, to every creative in-between, we have ourselves some gold-star favorites. One of those is the ever popular and incredibly dynamic BLACK BRAIN. Artist and community builder- he is taking LA’s notorious street art scene by storm, one Pop Noir mural at a time. We were able to catch up with the creative and ask a few questions: get the scoop below!

Q: When you explain yourself as an artist you probably use different words than the people who critique you- what words do you personally use to both define and influence your art?

A: My work tends to be a blend classical paint techniques with new mediums. I also mash-up different genres and subject matters. Politics with Comics, Botany with Anatomy, American Pop with Japanese, just to name a few.

This Pop Noire blend becomes cross wiring of pop culture, icons, and subjects to create a vuja dé.

A feeling of nostalgia and remembrance yet completely different than how you experienced it before. Layers upon layers of mashing up and remixing pop culture history to tell new, at times bizarre, stories and inflections on the 'remembered'.

As hinted by the name — utilizing ‘pop culture’ as a subversive tool to relay darker truths and observation usually in the guise of Colorful Dark Humor/Sattire.


Q: How do you choose the pop culture icons and pop culture allusions you represent in your art work?

A: The subjects I choose is an organic pendulum between disciplined exercises and a random spark of inspiration.

One discipline is to make lists. Lists by subject. Lists by era. Lists by name. Lists by category. Lists by color. Lists. Lists. Lists. Then the fun part — finding connections, patterns, and ironies. Put them together and the result is deep parallels between seemingly innocuous subjects.

Other times its just a spark. A cloud formation. A mishearing of what someone said. A cultural colloquialism that doesn’t quick translate. An audible pun visualized. Something random the kids say.


Q: Artists serve their community in a very specific way- how do you define civic duty? How do you think your art serves people?

A: As an artist I feel a responsibility to use my platform to cultivate conversations that move our culture forward or at minimum let people verbalize their inner voices.

Art serves as a strong visceral tool. It immediately engages people and reflects their inner thoughts.

When someone sees something revulsive or beautiful it is difficult to conceal their first impression. As an artist I want to capitalize on that first impression and have enough sustenance to foster a conversation. Hopefully leaving a lasting impression.


Q: You have four fantastic kids- what’s the best/weirdest question they’ve ever asked you about your craft?

A: When my three-year-old asks if she can borrow my circular saw!

My kids are being raised with art all around them. They get to see their mom and dad paint, draw, build and design everyday. So it’s interesting to see that they take art and building at face value and that tends to translate into replicating and doing versus questions.


Q: A lot of times creatives are told not to dream big because we’re deemed as people who don’t have tangible dreams- what do you want to do next? What’s the big dream you have and are trying to make into a tangible reality?

A: I wrote a song — its a parody on my moniker :



Gee, BlackBrain, what do you want to do tonight?



The same thing we do every night, Inky. Try to paint over the world.


They're INKY and The BlackBrain

Yes INKY and BlackBrain

One is a savant

The other Sniffs paint


They're studio mice

Their colors have been dyed

They're stinky

They're INKY and BlackBrain, Brain, Brain, Brain

Brain, Brain, Brain, Brain



Before each night is done

Their stencil will be cut

By an exacto on wax board

They'll paint over the world


They're INKY and BlackBrain

Yes INKY and BlackBrain

Their midnight campaign

Is visually insane


To prove their fartsy work

They'll overpaint the Earth

They're stinky

They're INKY and BlackBrain, Brain, Brain, Brain

Brain, Brain, Brain, Brain




Ta na na nana

Follow his IG: @blackbrainla to keep up with the latest art, culture, and witty song writing! And of course, inquiry to our email if you have interest in one of his prints.


Until next time,

Dec 9th