Singer Chris Brown defends artwork on Hollywood Hills home

Neigbors are angry at entertainer Chris Brown's street art painted outside his Hollywood Hills home.
(Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)

Neighbors of singer Chris Brown claim artwork outside his Hollywood Hills home is scaring local kids and ruining the aesthetic of the area.

But Brown says the hullabaloo is much ado about nothing. He has taken to Twitter to defend the work.

Responding to complaints about the art, L.A. city code officials cited Brown for unpermitted and excessive signage and ordered him to remove the art within 30 days. He also faces fines that start at $376 but could rise significantly if he fails to comply.


Brown on Saturday defended the artwork.

“There are scarier creatures on Harry Potter,” he wrote via Twitter. “Get a ... life!”

He also wrote “ima paint until my hands fall off.”

Brown’s attorney, Mark Geragos, said the musician is not backing down. He says it’s the neighbors who are harassing Brown.

“I’m scared of neighborhood busybodies like this,” Geragos said. “They’ve called animal control. They have sicced parking [enforcement] on him, and now they reached the heights of ridiculousness here. Shame on them.”

Geragos said the city can expect a legal fight over Brown’s personal artwork, which unwittingly thrust him into one of L.A.'s longest-running civic debates. Although the city has a reputation for being the street mural capital of the world, much of that artwork has been done illicitly.

City ordinances make it illegal to create murals on the vast majority of private properties.

“They are trying to suspend the 1st Amendment,” Geragos said.

Patti Negri, president of the Hollywood Dell Civic Assn. is not convinced.

“There are lots of babies, lots of children, and they’re literally frightened. It’s like devils on the wall — big, scary eyes and big, scary teeth, and just the whole vibe is not what we’re used to,” she said.

Brown is not the first celebrity to ruffle neighborhood feathers. Not far away, Madonna drew protests in the 1990s when she painted her Hollywood Hills home in red and yellow stripes.

Residents pulled the welcome mat from Lindsay Lohan over an endless procession of paparazzi and others speeding on her street. Justin Bieber‘s neighbors in Calabasas complain his entourage regularly races through the suburban gated community.

Negri remains hopeful Brown and his neighbors can mend fences.

“I know a $300 fine is probably pocket change. But hopefully and maybe, he’ll just see the light and decide to be a good neighbor,” she said. “We’re happy to have him — if he just tones it down.”


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