They are indeed auxiliary light mounting brackets, as Aunt Flow (too funny) stated. As for painting them, I really don't think that would be too great an idea. Believe it or not, they will sell AS IS just fine. They sell for around 34-50 bux NEW, so don't, depending on if they are chrome or stainless steel (which you can't paint anyhow). Black is more popular now, but no everyone cares about being popular (some of us have to make our wives happy...LOL). When Mamma's happy, everyone's happy!!!