NEW YORK ARTIST GUIDE: GABRIELLA

in EXPLORE
Gabriella @ggggrimes
My most difficult time was probably this past summer. My housing situation for the past few years hasn’t been good since NYC is so expensive, and I have very little space to actually
create. During the summer, I went through a breakup with an emotionally abusive partner that was devastating for me. I was hardly getting out of bed, showering, and eating proper meals. I
spent most of my time inside because there are always people outside, especially during the summer. There isn’t always the option in NYC of being unseen because so many areas stay
busy and crowded year round because of the population density and tourism. So I spent this past summer at the lowest point in my life in a cramped room with art supplies just making me
feel even more suffocated, and making me feel guilty for not creating that much.
How does this effect on your art?
Switching from watercolor to digital meant no longer having my art take up a lot of physical space when my space is limited. Being sad and suicidal made me turn more towards the people
who spread positivity in my life, and so I found myself depicting more people in the queer community. My art became happier, brighter, and more colorful. I genuinely don’t think I could
have gotten to this point as an artist without going through that incredibly horrible time.
Do you an activist side? Can you tell us that little bit?
I definitely have an activist side, but I wouldn’t say I’m the type of activist who goes out and protests (mostly because I would have an anxiety attack and that wouldn’t be fun for anyone.) I speak about the things that are important to me through my art: I show queer and cishet people of color being happy and living emotionally healthy lives. I think marginalized people being
happy within the circumstances of oppression is inherently political, as our bodies and existence are already politicized so much. I also like to portray certain messages by sharing memes, which might sound absolutely fake to an older generation. But I could repost a meme about the gender binary being silly and people ask questions or google things because they want to learn.
A lengthy thinkpiece about casual racism in the workplace is awesome, but so is a meme made by a person on Instagram roasting your white coworker who keeps confusing you with the only other Black person in the office and wears boat shoes in winter.

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