Amelia’s Magazine | Q&A with Paula Castro

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Your work will be featured in the Contemporary Graphic Art Fair, ‘Pick Me Up’ at Somerset House this April. Are you excited about this?
Very much!

Being based in Paris, how do you feel about the London graphic and illustration scene? Being raised in Buenos Aires and living in Paris allows me to have quite a distance from the Parisian scene.Paris is a more contemplative and playful city to me; extremelly beautiful, much smaller, less dynamic and precise than London. I do really like London’s graphic art scene when I come across simplicity and sarcasm (in the possitive way), cleverness and a sense of humor.

When did you first become interested in illustration? When I was little I was very spaced out at school (I still am), the only way I could focus was while drawing.

I understand that you are interested in the boundary between fine art and illustration, what is it in particular that interests you? The contemplation, context, risk, experimentation and the way all these elements mix together. As an illustrator my work is accessible to many individuals, it is more direct. Working in the fine arts field allows me to experiment, to explore, to be not sure, to take risks and feed myself and my illustration. I like this expert from “A portrait of the artist as a young man” by James Joyce

(…) It it Stephen Dedalus’s declared ambition “to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as i can and as wholly as i can, using for my defence the only arms i allow myself to use – silence, exile, and cunning.” (…)

Do you prefer to work to a design brief or exhibit your work in a gallery? The two have very different approaches, it is hard to compare.

Nature seems to be very important and appears consistently in your work. Do you work mainly from nature or imagination? Nature + founded images + music + poetry + imagination = my drawing cocktail. I usually work from images, but when I process them in my brain, imagination takes over and they end up looking very different from the original source of inspiration. Does it make sense? Or is this nonsense taking over?

You also use various techniques like playing with scale and repetition, what is it about these techniques that interests you? Yes, I do. I call them NOT repetitive patterns, which I feel is quite philosophical (in a modest way)

I really like your printed textiles and fashion illustrations. Is fashion a major inspiration for your work? Thanks! I like to see drawings taking over a dress in motion for example, because I feel they become three dimensional, almost sculptural or like a moving image. Yes, fashion is an inspiration, but only when I see diversity and individuals searching for their own style.

Your stage design for Issey Miyake was a real departure from your other work. Are there any other materials or techniques you are currently experimenting with? Issey Miyake’s stage design was a translation of my graphic universe into a three dimensional landscape. Yes, I am currently experimenting with other kind of mediums, like threads, bigger scale drawings and etchings.

What would be your ideal design brief? It is already ideal when people call me to do what I do. I prefer it when they give me a mood board or just some words. For example when I do the cooking recipes for Italian Velvet I have complete freedom and I really enjoy it.

After ‘Pick Me Up’, where will we see your work next? Mainz, Germany at Wak gallery on May 29th, Buenos Aires at Turbo gallery, a solo show in June.
Rome and Milan, limited edition prints of beachwear for Velvet magazine (monthly style magazine from La Repubblica newspaper).

If you happen to be around these places at these times, do pop by.
Paula Castro is represented by
Pick Me Up: Contemporary Graphic Art Fair will take place at Somerset House from 23 April till 3 May

Categories ,Issey Miyake, ,louisa lee, ,nature, ,paula castro, ,vogue

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