Kurt Cobain's Art and significance

Kurt Cobain continues to be an all encompassing icon, even after his death. He was the front man for the grunge band 'Nirvana', and ultimately influenced generations of movement and culture in his work.

Cobain was a multi-faceted artist, not only in musical talent. However, from many conversations I've gathered that not many people seem to know about his art. It seems as if his success as a musician has in turn made his other talents somewhat overlooked.

Several pieces of his artwork graced album covers for Nirvana, a few examples being for 'In utero' and 'Incestiside'. The latter is my personal favourite piece of art Cobain ever made, pictured below.

Incestitside, Kurt Cobain


Marionettes are seen time and time again throughout his art, an example of two seen in the painting above. This was mixed media, being acrylic mixed with oil.

Kurt was a multidisciplinary artist, specialising in music, but also has works in mixed media, acrylic, oil, collage and pen.

It's been said that whatever he could find, he would make art out of it. This includes dolls, graffitiing his own artworks and creating instillations out of found objects.

It's also interesting to note that sometimes he would change the spelling of his name within his works slightly, an example seen below.


Self portrait, Kurt Cobain


Cobain's artworks themes seem to be often surrounding his issues including depression and heroin addiction. There is also a lot of simple humour and a cathartic outlet.


Comic from Kurt Cobain's Journals


There are also countless drawings, sketches and comics found in his journals. Cobain had a lot of concept sketches of what he wanted his music videos to look like, which are absolutely incredible to see, especially after seeing the music videos too.

My personal favourite addition is an initial sketch of the 'Fender Jagstan' which Cobain designed.

Ultimately, he had a lot of potential, and even if he were to never be a musician, he could've been an influential artist

Cobain has been an idol of mine from an early age, and a big inspiration. I wanted to pay ode to him in my own art, featured below.