Submitted by: Gabriela Szulman
Gabriela Szulman, a London based artist, specializes in mixed media art. During COVID-19, her work has been largely inspired by everyday life and objects found around her home. Below, Gabriela kindly answered a few questions for us about the incredible art she is creating during these times.
Where did you get the inspiration for your mini-collage diptych ‘Windows’?
My mini-collage diptych was inspired by windows, both real and virtual. During this strange time when so many of us have found ourselves circumscribed by the walls of our homes and experiencing isolation of one sort or another, windows to the outside world have become particularly meaningful. The bedroom window through which I see the sky, the virtual window through which I talk to a friend, both offering connection and a sense of normality.
How has the pandemic impacted and inspired the work you create?
I spent longer than usual inside the studio during lockdown, and have continued to do so since then. My surroundings became a source of inspiration for the work, and I started drawing the things that are around me in the studio: broken dolls, old toys I’ve collected, cabinet cards and family photos. These drawings in turn became part of a new series of mixed media pieces where I combined watercolours and acrylic paint with collaged drawings, all quite different from previous work. They haven’t made it to my website yet but I’ve been sharing them on Instagram as part of the ‘artist support pledge’. *
The mini-collage diptychs I created in response to the open call from the Kanyer Collection were also a new departure for me, as I’d never made anything that small! It was an interesting process to explore, even if I don’t see myself working on that scale (5 cm) regularly.
What is your favourite part about creating mixed media art?
I love working with found images and objects, and transforming them via the creative process. I’m an inveterate collector of things that other people discard, and through my work I try to give them a new lease of life.
What message do you hope your artwork will spread during these times?
Many of my creations are humorous and whimsical, with splashes of vibrant colour and random connections between images. I hope people enjoy their quirkiness!
*The #artistssupportpledge is an initiative by @matthewburrowsstudio to help artists during the current crisis. As we all know, the pandemic has affected the livelihoods of lots of people. In common with many artists, most of my teaching and all my in-person selling events have disappeared. In response to this situation affecting so many of us, the idea of the pledge is a simple one: we post images of works we are willing to sell for under £200 on Instagram, and once we reach £1000 worth of sales, we spend £200 on another artist’s work.