An ongoing series of mini Q&As with some of L.A.’s most active and eclectic contemporary artists, introducing themselves to you in their own words. This week it’s painter, designer, musician and multiplatform creative Miles Regis, whose socially engaged work blends the vibrant style of his native Trinidad with the edginess of urban Los Angeles.
L.A. WEEKLY: When did you first know you were an artist?
MILES REGIS: As a 3- or 4-year-old child. I was always creative. It started with drawing, writing poetry and singing. I always had felt this need to document and comment on what was going on in the world around me.
What is your short answer to people who ask what your work is about?
I am documenting our truth with my journaling of visual stories. My work is a diary of sorts, a commentary on what we are experiencing as a society. My interpretation of what is happening in our world.
Why do you live and work in L.A., and not elsewhere?
I decided as a 10-year-old that L.A. was the place where I felt spiritually and creatively at home. The energy here is unexplainable. Felt it as a child and I still feel it today. Plus, the weather here couldn’t be more perfect.
When was your first show?
Ten years ago! November 2008 I did my first solo art exhibition. I did a private exhibition of 20 paintings at the home of one of my first collectors.
When is/was your current/most recent/next show?
Up next is Art Basel in Miami this December. I am headlining at Art Africa Miami.
Do you listen to music while you work? If so, what?
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Depends on my mood. I tend to have my own new songs in my head while I am painting, as I usually get an idea for both a visual creation and an accompanying melody or song lyric would usually surface in the moment. I get my inspiration while painting from artists who are exceptional. It can vary from artists like Marvin Gaye, Fela Kuti, Solange, Frank Ocean to all of the legends. Michael Jackson, Whitney, Stevie etc. I love playing a variety of music on shuffle.
Website and social media handles, please!