Brandon Maldonado was born in 1980 in Denver, Colorado, but grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, an area rich in Latino culture. To escape his daily existence of cacti, tumbleweeds and adobe houses, he engulfed himself in the fantasy worlds of Star Wars, He-Man, and Michael Jackson’s Thriller. Around the age of 10 he was introduced to graffiti and simultaneously influenced by local writer Giant One (better known today as Mike Giant), an impact that can still be seen in his current works. However, in high school, Maldonado learned vicariously from the mistakes of his peers and decided to stop ‘keeping it real’ and start keeping it on canvas, which eventually led to his independent study of the old world masters.
Maldonado’s painterly style is a hybrid of graffiti, ancient iconography of Central America, and classical imagery. His finished pieces evoke feelings of the human experience, from life’s joys, sorrows and struggles, to the mysteries of our mortal existence. “I pick up my paintbrushes and attempt to use art as a vehicle for inspiring change,” says Maldonado. “The process of making a painting in itself is a meditation for me. I discriminately choose the themes of my work, making certain that each concept is ultimately something I believe is worth saying and contemplating.”