"Gary Brown" at GRAAMA

"Gary Brown" by Christopher Chinn

Christopher Chinn’s painting Gary Brown (on view at the Grand Rapids African American Museum and Archives) is one piece to a larger project. During the summer of 2016 Chris and Gary met at the Lamp Community Art Project to create reciprocal portraits. Chris and Gary first met as artists in the exhibition “Intersections: The Real Faces of the Homeless” in 2012. Since then Gary and Chris have developed a friendship and mutual respect for each other’s artwork. The portraits are the result of their artistic collaboration and personal connection.

 An artist and jazz musician, Gary Brown was born in Louisiana in 1952 and lived there 38 years before moving to Los Angeles. After struggling for a decade on the street, he found a home, a community and his art with the support of the Lamp Community Art Project. Gary is not just a member of his community, for the past ten years he has been a recognized torchbearer for the arts in downtown Los Angeles.

Gary creates work on paper and canvas using graphite, inks, pastel and acrylics. His influences range from the world immediately around him to Egyptian mythology. "Making art is like a mystery", he says. "And I never had much mystery in my life."

Chris has drawn and painted Gary numerous times over the years, but the painting at GRAAMA is by far the most extensive. According to critic Dave Barton, “The brick and mortar behind him gives the feel of a New York hole-in-the-wall, the weighty daubs of paint giving it the texture of a warm embrace.” Gary, in his portrait of Chris, fuses geometric shapes and expressive marks to “dark facial hair and the whites of his eyes edged with blue and yellow chalk giving him a bold serenity worthy of Buddha.”

"Christopher Chinn" by Gary Brown

Chris will donate 20% of the sale of his painting Gary Brown to the Grand Rapids African American Museum and Archives. The Lamp Community Art Project and Gary will also share in a portion of the profit.


We Love Music

I am thrilled to share that my painting of Gary Brown is included in “We Love Music” at the Grand Rapids African American Museum and Archives, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The exhibition is on view from September 21 through October 7. Hours are Monday through Thursday 5 – 8, Friday and Saturday 12 – 8, and Sunday 12 – 6. The public reception is Sunday, September 24. The museum is located at 87 Monroe Center NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49507.

We Love Music Announcement


PØST Auction

I will have a small self-portrait in the annual fundraiser auction at PØST. The artworks will be exhibited on Saturday, June 24 from 7-10 PM. The Auction is free and open to the public. The Live auction closes that evening at 9. The online bidding is ongoing through June 24 at noon, here. PØST is located at 1206 Maple Avenue (The Bendix Building), #515, Los Angeles, CA 90015. PØST on FB

detail, Self-Portrait, 2017, oil on panel, 10" x 8"


A New Gallery of Recent Work

Please take a look at the new gallery of special projects and commissions under the "Recent Work" menu, or simply click on this - link.

detail, Shot of Rainbow, 2017, oil on panel, 11" x 14"


Mas Attack

I am excited to participate in the final MAS Attack exhibition at the invitation of Cathleen Abalos. The reception is Saturday, November 12 from 5 to 9 PM at the Torrance Art Museum, 3320 Civic Center Dr., Torrance, CA 90503. It is a one-night only exhibition with over 100 artists' work.