New Orleans takes pride of its various art forms. There’s color everywhere in the city. On the street in Jackson Square, in the galleries lined up on Julia Street and even the brightly painted houses in the Marigny neighborhood. One local artist that continues to captivates his audience with his larger than life art murals is Brandan “BMike” Odums. Known for his graffiti-style projects, his work is displayed all throughout the city from his “Wall of Peace” in New Orleans East to Treme paying tribute to the late Trumpet Black. He gained national attention in 2015 when he transformed an abandoned project complex into a storytelling masterpiece called Exhibit BE, now he’s opened a new art space in the Bywater with his first solo show to celebrate the grand opening. Images of local well-known movers and shakers in the community like singer Tarriona “Tank” Ball and activist and spoken word artist Mwende Katwiwa in an “Unapologetically Black” shirt and power couple Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King stand firmly in the center of one of the spaces in the warehouse with the words “Love Supreme” reading across the walls.
Odums plans to expand on the art space, but the large attendance and success of Studio BE are a testament to his hard work and how much the city of New Orleans values his genius and dedication to his community.