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Brandan 'BMike' Odums
Home Tour + Interview | Downtown, New Orleans

Take a peek inside of New Orleans' legend: BMike's museum-esque apartment

the world renowned visual artist guides me through his curated space + shares his love for all things black & cultural.

Interview + Photography: Rasharie Brown

Check out more from BMike: 

Instagram | Website | StudioBE

RB: How would you describe your space in 3 words?


"In three words?" he says jokingly .. *thinking out loud*  Dang, that's like five words, ha I was about to say:"

  • THE
  • OF 

Hebru Brantley x MINDstyle "Volt" Flyboy

"Line in front Manchu" by Auudi Dorsey

 "Buss Up" by CEAUX

"Jean-Michel Basquiat"  book by TASCHEN                        +                        "Stem Player"  by YE & Kano 

RB: What started your love / passion for collecting #BlackActionFigures?


“I'd always randomly walk down the toy aisle in any store that I go to …  & it was always rare to find black action figures. Anytime I seen one, I would always buy it .. just the impulse to get it, not really thinking about what I was gonna do with it. Then, I started to go down the rabbit hole and find extremely rare ones + black action figures from the 60s and 70s so, now I think it’s just one of those things that helps me not take myself too serious. I got a whole room full of action figures and I use to say that one day I’ll pass it onto future kids have them hold onto it, play with it or break it ... whatever happens."

Favorite Books + suggestions that everyone should read?


"My favorite types of books are: memoirs, autobiographies and comic books.

Top Memoirs? Anything by Gordon Parks, he wrote 3 memoirs! My favorite one is 'A Hungry Heart',

Gil Scott-Heron's memoir: 'The Last Holiday' is amazing,

Dick Gregory's memoir "NIGGER", is the name of it, he's super amazing. 


Favorite Comic Book? Right now, there's this series called  'Milestone Comics' and it's a collaboration with DC, these black writers wrote all these black characters; some of the most famous ones was, 'Static Shock' but, they have a whole universe of characters so, I've been reading a lot of their stuff which is really dope."


Up until this point, what's the most significant piece in your space or holds special meaning? 

BMike: “I appreciate all of the memories that I have accumulated while I’ve been living in this space. There’s a few things in here that feature my grandmother whether it’s a painting, photos etc. those things have the most significance to me right now for obvious reasons .. so, it’s just cool to randomly see her every day.”

1st drawing while attending NOCCA for 'Visual Arts'

(New Orleans Center for Creative Arts)

Exhibit BE:  "I found myself painting in forgotten places often, that lead me to Degaulle Manor a 360 unit apartment complex, abandoned since Hurricane Katrina." - via. bmike.com

RB: You own a lot of sneakers ..lots of Nike | were you always a sneaker collector?


"I think any black adult that has a sneaker collection ...has muscle memory of scarcity so, they're responding to that and it's no different for me. Growing up, I always liked cool sneakers. Did I always have them? NO. My mom and pops made sure we had one pair of shoes every year and that was pretty much our limit.  Now, as an adult, I see stuff that I like and I buy it and also it's been dope to have a relationship with #NIKE where sometimes I get cool stuff in the mail from them, but overall I just think shoes are super dope.

(continues) .. there's ones like, the Jerry Lorenzos that mean a lot because, I like the black designer and the fact he was able to come in and create his own silhouette & he's not an athlete. That's one of the best examples for why I collect. I'm not an athlete, I never was great in sports but, the fact that this man was an artist, whose a designer / creative was able to get his own shoe + to do it in a way that not many athletes even get to do it. That was always important having his collection but, yeah I buy what I like."

RB: With you transitioning into a new home, 

what are you looking forward to bringing into your new space?  


"Well, I definitely wanted to check this off the list, to say I live downtown .. look outside seeing buildings, people, traffic etc.

My new place is a home it has a yard (front & back), garage, it has all those things that make it .. I've got a lot more room to be a maximalist, I guess (lol) also I've got a lot more room to sorta be a minimalist too and not just pile everything into a smaller space. So, I'm looking forward to what time forges, ya know? This space didn't look like this when I first moved in, it took awhile to get to this point. I'm looking forward to how time forges what this new space becomes and just another canvas for me to create on."

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