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Southeast Texas arts community mourning death of artist known for area murals

Kimberly Brown was well known for her colorful murals that adorned the walls of buildings all over Southeast Texas.

BEAUMONT, Texas — The Southeast Texas arts community is mourning the loss today of a beloved Beaumont artist known for many iconic local murals.

Kimberly Brown, of Beaumont, died unexpectedly on Tuesday, August 16, 2022. She was 48.

Brown was born in Port Arthur and lived in Beaumont and Sour Lake for most of her life with short stays in New Braunfels, Alabama and Montana.

She had been a regular contributor to art shows at The Art Studio, Inc. in Beaumont beginning in the early 90s.

Brown showed up at the studio as a teenager, Greg Busceme, Sr., executive director of The Art Studio Inc. told 12News Wednesday afternoon

"She wanted to help out and be a part of what we do at the studio," Busceme said.

Brown really made her mark with her mural work in the last few years Busceme told 12News.

"She was an amazing talent as far as what she did artwork-wise," he said.

Brown was well known for her colorful murals that adorned the walls of buildings all over Beaumont and Southeast Texas.

One of her favorite murals depicts Frida Kahlo on a colorful background. It's on the side of a building along with several other murals at the corner of Neches and Fannin Streets in downtown Beaumont.

“It’s Frida. Always Frida Kahlo," she told the Port Arthur CVB in 2021 when asked about her favorite work.

Credit: Callie Summerlin/Port Arthur CVB
Frida Kahlo mural by Kimberly Brown

"Her mark will be here as well as other places all over Beaumont. So there's always a memory of Kimberly wherever we go," Busceme said standing in front of the Frida mural Wednesday afternoon.

In late 2021 she painted a mural of Port Arthur legend Janis Joplin inside the Ben J. Rogers Regional Visitor Center which is seen by more than 50,000 annual visitors to the center.

She also told the Port Arthur CVB that her mom told her that she was born in the same room in the same hospital that Joplin was born in.

Credit: Scott Eslinger/KBMT
Kimberly Brown's "Be Kind" traffic box at the intersection of Gladys Ave. and Central Drive in Beaumont.

Here's a list of some more murals Brown painted around Beaumont...

  • The Frida Mural - 660 Fannin St
  • Janis Mural - Ben J. Rogers Regional Visitor Center
  • Cattail Marsh Mural - 5200 Fannett
  • Pig Stand Mural - 1515 Calder Ave
  • Pour Brothers Mural - 585 Wall St
  • 1701 Barbeque - 1701 Calder Ave
  • "Be Kind" traffic box - Gladys and Central
  • Houston Astros mural - 1065 Laurel Ave.

Brown made her living as a commercial artist painting signs and murals for businesses in Southeast Texas and around the state. Her work also can be found at Rikenjaks, Luke's, Gather Cafe, Tattoos by Mundo and Cactus Cactus.

"I'd like to remember her as an Art Studio person because she started with us and ended with us," Busceme said.

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