Local Artists' Tribute to Lakers' Kobe Bryant

Howard Cole

It's been two weeks since we lost Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gigi and their seven beautiful co-passengers. And it still hurts. I'm in the West Valley, it's Sunday morning and the weather is all too familiar.

While I don't cover the Lakers, I'm a lifelong fan and wanted to share something with my community. So I asked four Southern California-based artists, including two photographers and Lakers fans all, to show us their Kobe works from years past. And here they are.

The three below are from Stanley Silver. Directly below is SHAQ and KOBE Oil and Sand (Santa Monica and Venice beach) on Canvas 48” x 60", and the only one that is still available for purchase. Below that is KOBE Oil on Canvas 48” x 36" and KOBE II Oil on Canvas 60” x 36".

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Below are three photographs from California State University, Northridge professor David Blumenkrantz. The first is Victory Parade, 2009. Below that are Lakers vs. Clippers 1, 2015 and Lakers vs. Clippers 2, 2015.

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Next are from charcoal and pastel artist Dave Hobrect. Kobe or KG?, followed by three photos of Untitled, about which Dave told me this:

"My most recent painting of Kobe is a special one. I just painted it in October. I collaborated with the head photographer at Staples and the Lakers' Andy Bernstein. Kobe signed it for us to help raise money for a great cause, the Walking Strong Foundation. I painted it using multiple references from Andy’s archives. The light I put in him now takes and entire new meaning.

"My son and I picked it up at [Kobe's] offices in Newport Beach. What an incredible office ... full of art and creativity. Notice the signature? He signed his first and last name very clearly. Most sigs I’ve seen he only signs Kobe. This painting was signed by Kobe, Andy and myself. Wondering if this is the last piece of art he signed?"

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Finally and sadly, photographer and Calabasas resident Eric Zumstein snapped this one: "When I took this picture I had no idea who was on board."

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Comments (1)
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K.D.F. 1974
K.D.F. 1974

It has been over two weeks but I still can't believe Kobe Bryant is gone. He certainly helped made collecting basketball cards fun again. I will keep all of the Kobe Bryant rookie cards forever. Rest in the peace Black Mamba.


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