If you could see into my brain as if you were looking into a room, it would be filled with bright colors, paints, glitter, shiny things, anime, tattoos, cats, and candy among other things. At any given time there would be music playing because I almost always have one song or another stuck in my head (lately it’s been “Albatross” by Big Wreck). Inspiration is having all of these things in my head bursting to get out onto the page, the feeling in my arms, wrists and hands to translate this chaos into something concrete and tangible. Art can be a calming process for this reason; if I go too long without doodling or painting or creating, I get anxious and stressed.
I’m fairly certainly I’ve included Natalia Fabia’s work before in an inspiration blog post, but recently I was introduced to it again and took more time looking through her website. Basically, her work contains all of the things that make me turn my head: bright colors, fashion, rock n roll and insane detail. Her paintings are wildly detailed and every single object has a particular reason for being there. I read in a magazine article listed on her website that she’d spent such a long time painting a small alarm clock in one of her other paintings that her boyfriend and put a sticky note above it, stating “it’s good enough”, and then she painted that in too! Dedication!
Looking at her paintings, I very quickly came to a conclusion; I love every single one of them! With some artists, I find myself only drawn to select works, or one work in particular, making choosing a favorite fairly easy. With hers, though, even trying to pick paintings to display on this blog was agony! It’s like she was able to get into my head and pick out all the things I find visually stimulating and painted using all of those ideas. Punk rock, clubbing and japanese culture seem to be the main focuses of her works but she explores other areas as well (in her Hooker Safari series she expertly renders animals like tigers and rhinos). Not only are her subjects completely stunning, but her environments are so well thought out and beautiful. She walks the line between serenity and chaos expertly, toeing on overwhelming but not quite. It’s like she puts absolutely everything she has into every painting so she can be proud of it, something I’m striving towards with my own work.
Her latest show is called “Punk Rock Rainbow Sparkle” which sounds like a) a kick-ass punk girl band or b) a deliciously sour ice cream flavor or even c) a palette of insanely bright makeup. Unfortunately, it’s a little out of my reach, currently at the Jonathan LeVine Gallery in New York, though Hi Fructose has some awesome photos of her opening night! The works in this series are hyper-realistic renderings of punk rock princesses in various settings, includes clubs (dance floor and bathrooms), mansions and even seemingly simplistic rooms like a messy kitchen. She has a nac for making a normally boring space saturated with detail to the point where I want examine every piece of the painting to try and understand what kind of story it’s trying to tell (in the above painting, look at the painstaking detail on the papers posted on the fridge).
According to another magazine article listed on her website, she spends days, weeks and even months travelling with a camera taking hundreds of photos to later use for reference in these dreamscapes. Bringing bags full of props with her, she sets up and takes down rooms and furniture to her liking, to get the perfect atmosphere for her subjects (many of whom are her friends). Females are her most popular subject and there is lots of nudity as well, but despite this her work isn’t exploitive or pornographic. Her skill with the female figure is well-developed and never too polished or over-done. These women look real, both beautiful and gritty and when they are dressed, they’re dressed to the nines in killer heels and gorgeous corsets.
At this point I’m probably bordering on gushing, but I’d love to meet Natalia and check out her space. I’ve said before that I love when artists give us a glimpse at their workspace. I get a taste of the vibes that drives these artists and it’s completely inspiring! I also have a huge amount of respect for artists, and crafters for the matter, that open their space up and explain their methods rather than keeping them locked away. It’s one thing to know how a particular artist paints (using techniques, certain materials, etc), but it’s a whole other skill to be able to paint as they do. The two are not the same.
It took me quite a bit longer than normal to write this entry because I kept going back to look through her work and would get lost in it. That’s pretty much the highest compliment I can give her. I think I may have a girl-crush going on, people. She is where I want to be in the art world. Go check out her stuff! Gogogo!