In the late 1940s, Jackson Pollock faced extensive criticism from the art establishment after presenting his now-famous drip paintings, where his paintbrush never touched the surface of the canvas. “It doesn’t matter how the paint is put on, as long as something is said,” Pollock commented at the time. It’s a sentiment that painter and performance artist Brent Ray Fraser has taken to heart. In 2009, the Vancouver-based artist began imprinting his penis on a canvas. Today he uses his genitals as artistic tools to create colorful paintings as large as 12-feet wide.
If you think you’ve seen it all when it comes to performance art, I double-dog dare you to witness this outrageous and unbelievable show of live artmaking, at which passionate painter Brent Ray Fraser composes a portrait with the painterly strength of Willem de Kooning—using body parts you’d never expect. Watch the fearless, fabulously buff creator as he works undressed and drenched in paint. You’ll certainly leave inspired, and very stimulated.
It was a pleasure to sit down with Brent for this exclusive Hotspots interview, just a couple weeks before his performance at Arts United.
At what age did you begin painting?
At the age of 3 when I was in pre-school—I took to it right away. I can still remember the first painting and drawing I ever made.
Did you get any professional training?
Yes, I have a B.F.A. from the Emily Carr University of Art in 2009, but I only took one painting class there.
What is the painting/drawing you sold for the most amount of money?
It was a penis painting I had done of a Roy Lichtenstein original work called “Wham.” It was a large painting of an airplane exploding, and it was about 7 feet by 7 feet. Oh no, wait, I am wrong, the most amount of money I got was for a 10 foot by 20 foot painting of an orgy lesbian sea and their hair created the waves.
When did you start painting with your penis?
In 2009, on my birthday—I think I was turning 30. It was with an art collector and he wanted to capture sexuality and my state of arousal as an artist. Instead of lube I used paint, and then when I was erect I pressed my penis on the canvas 29 times, to celebrate the end of my 20’s.
When did it take off?
I remember the morning I answered a phone call from Paris, France. It was the producers from Fremantle Entertainment’s Got Talent franchise. They asked if I could paint a portrait with my penis in less than three minutes and if I could speak French. Even though I had never attempted this and could not speak a word of French, I said yes, no problem. They said to “prove it with an audition video” and if I could, I would get on the show. The next day I figured out how to do complete this unprecedented feat and asked my cousin in Toronto to teach me some basic French. A few months later, I stepped on stage in front of the France Got Talent judges, including Gilbert Rozon whose portrait I painted. The performance went viral and from then on I began traveling the world doing talent show after talent show and appearance after appearance.
What are some of the famous works you painted with your penis?
Mona Lisa, Andy Warhol, Marilyn, Barrack, several Lichtenstein’s, Jackson Polluops drip paintings, and much more. I went through art history and chose my favorite artists, and wanted to sexualize their work.
Tell me about Chaturbate.com?
That was a suggestion by a mutual friend who knew that I was doing live penis painting in front of audiences. He suggested I do it on this website. I looked it up since I never heard of these sites before. I started performing on there years ago, and it was an unexpected stage that I became popular quite fast.
Does your penis get sore?
Yes, there is no physical pleasure involved. It’s like rubbing your penis on sand paper. I do get artistic pleasure. I did find glazing and techniques to further protect myself.
What do you do for fun?
I like going to the gym and lifting weights. I also love roller skating, which I bring with me when I travel to do shows.
What should our readers expect from your art show at Arts United?
This is the first time I have ever done a dual performance. I am doing a brush painting and then later on doing a Penis Painting. We will be auctioning off the work for charity. I am also including the audience to help me paint.
What does the future hold for you?
I am getting married next summer, and I plan to continue on with art. I am very excited about the future.