FAR BEYOND THE IG REALM,

 REBECCA BROSNAN EMBODIES THE QUINTESSENTIAL TRIPLE THREAT:

  ARTIST, MODEL and MUSE.  

 

 

 

 

 interview and photos by Beata Kanter

 


 1/3


 

Beata Kanter: What was it like for you, growing up in NYC?

 

Rebecca Brosnan: I grew up in a very isolated bubble. My imagination was my whole childhood. I lived vicariously through Anime, Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z and my Barbie dolls. By the time I got to the 3rd grade, I was fed up. One day I decided that I was going to disappear. I walked out of my after-school program, and I discovered St. Mark’s. It changed my life. It was the mecca of grunge back then. Search and Destroy was the soul of that whole block. I remember seeing the fetuses and dildos and spikes and studs. I was just like yes, this is what I’ve dreamed of.

 

 

 

“My parents wanted me to grow up into who they wanted me to be. I turned out to be who I always was, regardless.”

 

  

 

RB: By the time I got to high school I was literally living out of my locker. It was thin but super deep. I shoved my whole life into it; textbooks, clothes, empty packs of cigarettes, bottles of cough syrup... it was just a mess. My classmates always knew where to find me so when I got into trouble, they’d give me a heads-up.

 

BK: How did you discover your talent as a visual artist?

 

RB: I grew up drawing on my walls. It’s just something that I’ve always done.

 

BK: To this day, you don’t use traditional canvases in your work.

 

RB: I use whatever I can find. When I feel inspired, I’ll rip apart shoe boxes, or cigarette cases and start painting.

 

BK: Have you ever gotten discouraged halfway through a piece?

 

RB: Yes, definitely. When that happens, I’ll take the risk or I’ll just leave it. I may pick it up years later.

 


2/3


 

BK: How did you manage to build such a strong social media presence?

 

RB: Being mixy. Growing up in NYC you meet everybody, and I never went out of my way to meet anybody. It was kind of a matter of… I hung out with this group of people, and this group, and this group. And all of those people all know certain other people. New York is a small city.

 

BK: Do you feel privileged?

 

RB: Yes, definitely. Before anything I’m a painter, but with all of the other careers I’ve been dabbling in and campaigns I’ve been doing… I know it’s because I’ve grown up in New York and been able to meet so many artists and musicians.

 

BK: Are you worried about burning bridges? Being in the mix can be risky.

 

RB: Not really, no. No matter what bridge I burn, there will be no shade from me towards the other side of that bridge. And if they take it the wrong way or if they have shade towards me, it won’t change the fact that I have bridges going in all other directions. I’m going to be fine.

 

BK: Have you always had such an unshakeable faith in yourself?

 

RB: Subconsciously, maybe. I grew up very insecure about a lot of things.

 

 

“In my actions, I was always true to myself.”

 

 

BK: How would you describe your relationship with drugs?

 

RB: I’m an experimental drug user. I like tripping. I like shrooms a lot. I took a tab once and that was fine. The first time I tripped out on shrooms, I started seeing what things were made of. I started feeling what the space between everything was. When I looked at cars I would think about all the different mechanics and what they looked like through every layer. I would see through them. And when I looked at people I thought ‘eewww’ they are bags of flesh. So gross.

 

BK: You were seeing through 3 – dimensional objects?

 

RB: Yes, and I kept tripping out. At first I was just watching Kung Fu Hustle in the room, and I love that movie so it was all good. And then my friends asked me to hot box with them in the bathroom. Imagine this little - ass lower east side apartment bathroom. The whole space is as big as the toilet. My friend’s on the toilet and my other friend is sitting right in front of him on a little foot stool, and I’m on the ledge of the bathroom shaking because I’m going in and out of birds eye view. I was freaking out. And then I thought, ‘OK, I have to go outside. I didn’t want to be in this bathroom, you told me I had to be in this bathroom, and now it’s my time to leave.’ So I went outside into the world and I just started seeing things in different perspectives and it was cool. It took me a long time to get home, but when I did it was all good.

 

 

 

BK: Do you concern yourself with health and/or nutrition?

 

RB: Yes. I’m very big on feeling myself out. I know how to handle how I’m feeling. If I’m dehydrated in the slightest I take care of it when I can. If I look at myself in the mirror and I feel like I need to work on something, I’ll work on it. If I feel like I’m lacking somewhere I’ll pick that back up. I handle matters as they come.


 

3/3


BK: Have you ever had any run – ins on the street?  

 

RB: Not me personally, no. My older brother’s gotten jumped like 7 times though. Every time he’s come home from an episode, I’d go outside with a knife and ask him to point them out, to show me who the fuck did it. I’ve chased kids up blocks for my brother.

 

BK: That’s a lot of responsibility to take on.

 

RB: It doesn’t feel like it. In the moment, that’s how I react. It doesn’t feel like a responsibility. It feels like something I have to do.

 

BK: You are not afraid to stand up to someone with a gun or a knife? How is that possible?

 

RB: The thing to fear most is fear itself. The question is, what are you afraid of? And the answer is, what you’re making yourself afraid of.  

 

BK: What do you mean?

 

RB: You could find yourself in the middle of a mob with a gun in your pocket. Keep calm about it and nobody will notice. But if you psych yourself out and freak out, that’s when everybody else will start freaking out.

 

 

“If you allow yourself to become a victim of fear, that’s when you’re really f*cking yourself up the most.”

 

 

 

BK: Has anything ever thrown you off your equilibrium?

 

RB: Yes. Perfect example, the night before the art show that you curated. I woke up off the ground and I was on a block that I didn’t remember walking on to begin with. I woke up thinking, it’s cold out. I patted all my pockets to make sure that I had everything on me. I remember asking myself, how did I end up on this ground? Did I fall unconscious? Did I peacefully sit myself down? I knew I had to get home. I saw that my train was leaving in 7 minutes so I booked it and I caught that train. In the morning I got my shit together and went to your art show.

 

BK: What are your thoughts on growing older? Do you notice how you’ve evolved?

 

RB:  I’ve learned a lot of more empathy as I’ve grown up. When I was a kid I had no empathy. I was low-key, a bully. If you came up to me and I wasn’t feeling you, I’d be a dick. We used to have those plastic covers for our Yu-gi-oh! cards, and my cover was cracked. Some kid came up to me and I wasn’t feeling him, so I took my Yu-gi-oh! cover and I cut his finger with it. I had no remorse about it either. He was looking at me crazy so I grabbed his finger, licked his blood, looked at him and said ‘ew you taste gross!’. He was freaking out screaming ‘oh my god’, and I was just looking at him thinking, what? I was a really crazy girl. When I think back on those moments… I could not even be trying to lick somebody’s blood. There’s disgusting things in that.

I was a really crazy kid.   

 

 

 

                                                                                                        for more on the artist, visit her IG at @rbatzz

FAR BEYOND THE IG REALM,

 REBECCA BROSNAN EMBODIES THE QUINTESSENTIAL TRIPLE THREAT:

  ARTIST, MODEL and MUSE.  

 

 

 

 

 interview and photos by Beata Kanter

 


 1/3


 

Beata Kanter: What was it like for you, growing up in NYC?

 

Rebecca Brosnan: I grew up in a very isolated bubble. My imagination was my whole childhood. I lived vicariously through Anime, Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z and my Barbie dolls. By the time I got to the 3rd grade, I was fed up. One day I decided that I was going to disappear. I walked out of my after-school program, and I discovered St. Mark’s. It changed my life. It was the mecca of grunge back then. Search and Destroy was the soul of that whole block. I remember seeing the fetuses and dildos and spikes and studs. I was just like yes, this is what I’ve dreamed of.

 

 

 

“My parents wanted me to grow up into who they wanted me to be. I turned out to be who I always was, regardless.”

 

  

 

RB: By the time I got to high school I was literally living out of my locker. It was thin but super deep. I shoved my whole life into it; textbooks, clothes, empty packs of cigarettes, bottles of cough syrup... it was just a mess. My classmates always knew where to find me so when I got into trouble, they’d give me a heads-up.

 

BK: How did you discover your talent as a visual artist?

 

RB: I grew up drawing on my walls. It’s just something that I’ve always done.

 

BK: To this day, you don’t use traditional canvases in your work.

 

RB: I use whatever I can find. When I feel inspired, I’ll rip apart shoe boxes, or cigarette cases and start painting.

 

BK: Have you ever gotten discouraged halfway through a piece?

 

RB: Yes, definitely. When that happens, I’ll take the risk or I’ll just leave it. I may pick it up years later.

 


2/3


 

BK: How did you manage to build such a strong social media presence?

 

RB: Being mixy. Growing up in NYC you meet everybody, and I never went out of my way to meet anybody. It was kind of a matter of… I hung out with this group of people, and this group, and this group. And all of those people all know certain other people. New York is a small city.

 

BK: Do you feel privileged?

 

RB: Yes, definitely. Before anything I’m a painter, but with all of the other careers I’ve been dabbling in and campaigns I’ve been doing… I know it’s because I’ve grown up in New York and been able to meet so many artists and musicians.

 

BK: Are you worried about burning bridges? Being in the mix can be risky.

 

RB: Not really, no. No matter what bridge I burn, there will be no shade from me towards the other side of that bridge. And if they take it the wrong way or if they have shade towards me, it won’t change the fact that I have bridges going in all other directions. I’m going to be fine.

 

BK: Have you always had such an unshakeable faith in yourself?

 

RB: Subconsciously, maybe. I grew up very insecure about a lot of things.

 

 

“In my actions, I was always true to myself.”

 

 

BK: How would you describe your relationship with drugs?

 

RB: I’m an experimental drug user. I like tripping. I like shrooms a lot. I took a tab once and that was fine. The first time I tripped out on shrooms, I started seeing what things were made of. I started feeling what the space between everything was. When I looked at cars I would think about all the different mechanics and what they looked like through every layer. I would see through them. And when I looked at people I thought ‘eewww’ they are bags of flesh. So gross.

 

BK: You were seeing through 3 – dimensional objects?

 

RB: Yes, and I kept tripping out. At first I was just watching Kung Fu Hustle in the room, and I love that movie so it was all good. And then my friends asked me to hot box with them in the bathroom. Imagine this little - ass lower east side apartment bathroom. The whole space is as big as the toilet. My friend’s on the toilet and my other friend is sitting right in front of him on a little foot stool, and I’m on the ledge of the bathroom shaking because I’m going in and out of birds eye view. I was freaking out. And then I thought, ‘OK, I have to go outside. I didn’t want to be in this bathroom, you told me I had to be in this bathroom, and now it’s my time to leave.’ So I went outside into the world and I just started seeing things in different perspectives and it was cool. It took me a long time to get home, but when I did it was all good.

 

 

 

BK: Do you concern yourself with health and/or nutrition?

 

RB: Yes. I’m very big on feeling myself out. I know how to handle how I’m feeling. If I’m dehydrated in the slightest I take care of it when I can. If I look at myself in the mirror and I feel like I need to work on something, I’ll work on it. If I feel like I’m lacking somewhere I’ll pick that back up. I handle matters as they come.


 

3/3


BK: Have you ever had any run – ins on the street?  

 

RB: Not me personally, no. My older brother’s gotten jumped like 7 times though. Every time he’s come home from an episode, I’d go outside with a knife and ask him to point them out, to show me who the fuck did it. I’ve chased kids up blocks for my brother.

 

BK: That’s a lot of responsibility to take on.

 

RB: It doesn’t feel like it. In the moment, that’s how I react. It doesn’t feel like a responsibility. It feels like something I have to do.

 

BK: You are not afraid to stand up to someone with a gun or a knife? How is that possible?

 

RB: The thing to fear most is fear itself. The question is, what are you afraid of? And the answer is, what you’re making yourself afraid of.  

 

BK: What do you mean?

 

RB: You could find yourself in the middle of a mob with a gun in your pocket. Keep calm about it and nobody will notice. But if you psych yourself out and freak out, that’s when everybody else will start freaking out.

 

 

“If you allow yourself to become a victim of fear, that’s when you’re really f*cking yourself up the most.”

 

 

 

BK: Has anything ever thrown you off your equilibrium?

 

RB: Yes. Perfect example, the night before the art show that you curated. I woke up off the ground and I was on a block that I didn’t remember walking on to begin with. I woke up thinking, it’s cold out. I patted all my pockets to make sure that I had everything on me. I remember asking myself, how did I end up on this ground? Did I fall unconscious? Did I peacefully sit myself down? I knew I had to get home. I saw that my train was leaving in 7 minutes so I booked it and I caught that train. In the morning I got my shit together and went to your art show.

 

BK: What are your thoughts on growing older? Do you notice how you’ve evolved?

 

RB:  I’ve learned a lot of more empathy as I’ve grown up. When I was a kid I had no empathy. I was low-key, a bully. If you came up to me and I wasn’t feeling you, I’d be a dick. We used to have those plastic covers for our Yu-gi-oh! cards, and my cover was cracked. Some kid came up to me and I wasn’t feeling him, so I took my Yu-gi-oh! cover and I cut his finger with it. I had no remorse about it either. He was looking at me crazy so I grabbed his finger, licked his blood, looked at him and said ‘ew you taste gross!’. He was freaking out screaming ‘oh my god’, and I was just looking at him thinking, what? I was a really crazy girl. When I think back on those moments… I could not even be trying to lick somebody’s blood. There’s disgusting things in that.

I was a really crazy kid.   

 

 

 

                                                                                                        for more on the artist, visit her IG at @rbatzz