Kent Twitchell

artist interviews

Click here to stream or download the July 19, 2014 interview  |  Stream on iTunes

Artist Background

Kent Twitchell (born August 17, 1942, Lansing, Michigan) is an American muralist who is most active in Los Angeles. He is most famous for his larger-than-life mural portraits, often of celebrities and artists. His art is considered realism.

After high school Twitchell joined the United States Air Force and was stationed in London, where he served as an illustrator. Upon his discharge, he studied art at East Los Angeles College (AA, 1968), California State University, Los Angeles (BA, 1972), and the Otis College of Art & Design (MFA, 1977).

After working during the early ’60s as an Air Force artist in London, Kent Twitchell moved to Los Angeles in 1966 and began doing what he refers to as “Street Art.” His ambitious series of murals, “Monuments to American Cultural Heroes,” started in 1971 with “Steve McQueen Monument” near downtown LA and “Strother Martin Monument” in Hollywood.

In 1973 Kent painted a five-story “Bride & Groom” followed by “Old Woman of the Hollywood Freeway.” He has painted over 100 portraits within some 30 exterior murals including the “Julius Erving Monument” in Philadelphia; monuments to visual artists Edward Ruscha, Jim Morphesis, Lita Albuquerque and Gary Lloyd; and the LA Chamber Orchestra on three nine-story walls overlooking the downtown freeway. Kent painted a dual public monument to Will Rogers in San Bernardino and is planning monuments to artist Charles White on the wall of the original Otis Gallery, now the Charles White Elementary School, a new Monument to the contemporary Ed Ruscha in the “Arts District” in Downtown LA, Joe Lewis in Detroit and Ted Williams in Boston plus a few surprises. His murals, studio paintings and drawings most often depict a lone figure standing and looking straight out at the viewer.

In the past 45 years he’s created over 100 murals in cities all over the United States. He has also taught art at Otis College. He currently is available to do private and public projects.

To see more of Kent Twitchell’s artwork, visit the artist’s website at: www.kenttwitchell.org.

In addition, to read more about Kent Twitchell, check out articles from the L.A. Times here (2014) and here (2009).