About the Artist
Hi. I’m Brandon Mitts. Chroma Rodeo is the name of my studio practice in Oklahoma. I received my BFA from Oklahoma State University and my MFA from Arizona State University.
After decades of painting abstractly, I returned to my portrait roots in 2023. My current project consists of painting every celebrity that has ever lived. This is an exploration of influence, inspiration, and importance.
As a kid, I drew tons of celebrities. My family cheered my depictions of musicians such as Buddy Holly, Travis Tritt, Boxcar Willie, Vince Gill, Paul McCartney, and Garth Brooks. The Guymon High School football coach even commissioned me to do a pencil drawing of Bear Bryant.
My work transitioned into painterly abstraction in college and throughout graduate school. Even if my subjects began as people or places, those sources became unrecognizable in the finished works. This was my typical process through 2022, and these paintings are visible under the “Abstract” tab.
Currently, I explore the concept of celebrity. What constitutes fame? What is being celebrated when these individuals are elevated? Who are the celebrities in fields besides entertainment?
These 14x11 paintings use three colors and are executed with curiosity and humor. The working concept is to paint *every* celebrity, so there is an immediacy to them as well. (The clock is ticking.) Painters that influence my current approach include Amy Sherald, T.C. Cannon, Alex Katz, Alice Neel, Howard Finster, Beverly McIver, and Brian Calvin.