Today we’d like to introduce you to Gabriela Domville.
Hi Gabriela, so excited to have you on the platform. So, before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
My early creative expression started at an early age building, constructing, sewing as my childhood pastimes and became a lifetime passion. I made my own newspaper patterns at age 12 and took live model drawing classes at 16. Enrolled in BFA then switched to Fashion design to finish my major in Mexico City, my natal country. A few years later I studied ceramics in Florence, Italy. I have moved through different disciplines in my artistic life but always in a creative line. I have worked in the apparel industry for several years and did ceramics as a hobby, opening a new plain of expression. After moving to San Diego Ca., I continued my search for creativity, and while I was busy with 3 toddlers’ daughters, I ended two certifications in UCSD one in Art and Creative Process the other in Photography (long journey but grateful that I accomplished it). I have traveled to England, New York, Mexico to attend numerous workshops in mix media techniques as well as others taken locally and online. My art is a collection of all these experiences, often using fabric, thread, paint, and objects (many recycled) that bring a new element to a traditional approach.
A tragic accident in my family when I was a teenager, my deep appreciation for nature and motherhood gives me a perspective of the fragility and frugality of life, as well as the importance of conservation of resources. These ideas are a constant theme expressed in my art, either in paint, paper, fabric, or thread. I often employ elements that represent nature, time, life, death; a very subtle Memento Mori. It is part of my practice to include discarded materials like teabags, labels, used papers, fabrics, wood, etc in my artwork as a recycling method and giving back to Earth as well as repurposing objects.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
Being an artist and mother of 3 has had its challenges! In order to create a volume of work you need time and to manage kids, you also need time so I have had to leave art sometimes for months to focus on my daughters when the where babies but I always come back to my happy place. Another big challenge is to be disciplined and consistent with a schedule since you are your own boss, it is easy to put aside art for the sake of fulfilling other tasks so I have found that I need to schedule in my phone my committed hours in order to have studio time. Hence, social media and promotion is another big part that being an artist requires which in many ways all artists find it a burden. We love to create but we hate to sell!
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I love sewing and collage above all the medium that I work with, it comes very natural to me. I use my sewing machine to draw over my sketches. Painting is harder fr me, especially oil painting as it requires patience to let each layer dry, and it can take me over 30 layers to finish a piece. I am most proud of my Preserve collection because it stands for who I am.
While visiting the The San Diego Natural History Museum’s bird archives, I was deeply impacted by the striking beauty of their bird collection, (some of it dated late 1800), It got me thinking that hundred years from now, maybe this will be the common way to view animals, preserved in a drawer, because of the impact we cause in nature. We as humans interfere and intervene in a positive or negative way with the environment, every day we have the choice to do something to care for it and we keep destroying it.
Through my latest body of work, Preserve (Bird series), I want to invite the viewer to become aware of the small actions that we can take in our daily lives to conserve the environment, stepping away from our contemporary lives, of instant gratification, consumerism, and disposing of objects; inciting viewer to going back to old times like when we used the grandmother’s chinaware that were precious and non-disposable. I am also influenced by the. patterns printed on the chinaware which derive from French tapestries “Toile de Jouy” where rural landscapes appear unaltered, humans interacting with nature in a friendly way.
Deeply concerned about the impact that we humans have caused to the environment, my work’s central idea is to call out the impact that mankind is causing to the environment, in this case, specifically the birds as one example of the many animals that are endangered because of our daily habits… I would like to contribute in any possible way to plant a seed; if through my work I can impact the viewer, I can start a chain reaction towards making this a better world. When we can care for our own world, we can start caring for our neighbors as well
As a result of this internal process and art collection, I also created a scarf collection printed in silk, cotton, modal/cashmere, and cashmere with motifs related to birds and nature. As a nature lover, committed to saving our environment, I am hoping this collection brings more awareness about birds as one of the many species in danger of extinction but also dedicating some of the profits to support non-profit organizations that advocate this cause.
I have worked in many details to support my standing like fair trade suppliers, organic cotton, eco printing, recycled silk for wrapping, and packaging from suppliers that plants trees.
What sets me apart from others, is my heritage. Being born and raised in Mexico City gave me a different cultural background which I am thankful for it has given me a deep understanding of family, unity, care, sense of community while caring for our planet and helping people in need. Its rich colorful towns, foods and traditions has nurtured myself.
We’d love to hear about what you think about risk-taking?
I took a mayor risk in founding a company when I worked in the fashion industry, that sold bed linens. I started this company and worked in it until I moved to SD.
I have recently launched my scarf collection, starting from cero, designing, looking for suppliers, performing test, dealing with every single detail that it required, has implied a big risk and trust in myself. I have done so many things that I would not dare to do, but at the end, it is all worth the risk to helping out and giving back.
I believe that risk is uncomfortable but the only way to grow is moving out of comfort. I have so much more knowledge today than I had in the past, because of the risk that I am willing to put myself into.
- prints starting at $25
- scarves starting at $79
- Website: www.gabrieladomville.com
- Instagram: @gabrieladomvilleart
- Other: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/gabriela-domville/shop