It’s a little difficult to explain the work of Dyami O’Brien. The artist paints warped portraits of people that exaggerate their physical characteristics while also addressing their personal style. They’re inspired by everything from soul records to Facebook pages, something we discovered while researching his work previously for Los Angeles, I’m Yours. If anything, O’Brien is an artist doing something totally unique.
While he paints many things, his portraits are the easiest to fall in love with. They provide an immediate laugh since the persons portrayed are very non-traditional in appearance, much like Picasso done through a muted Lisa Frank style. His work is also inspired by African American subcultures that range from modern soul music (Which is why Prince and R.Kelly make cameos in his paintings.) to South Los Angeles folk heroes like Essence Hawkins of Hawkins House Of Burgers. He has a style truly of his own which, really, is very, very cool. He’s onto something with this body of work because it plays with the body through painting.
It’s important to note that Dyami is still in school, which is slightly surprising given how developed his point of view is. He may seem limited by a certain style but his lending it to various forms like drawings and textiles shows he’s not content to do just one thing. This is one artist that we’ve been obsessed with for some time and we cannot wait to see what else he comes up with. Catch more of his work here.