Artists ~ ASH ~ Providence

Artist’s name: ASH
Shop name: Giraffes and Robots
Twitter: @giraffesrobots

1. Tell us about your work
ART that makes you SMILE.
The media is constantly bombarding us with sad, violent and depressing images. I want to counter those images with big, bright, happy, peaceful images that make you smile. Everyone seems to be in search of happiness nowadays and I think a big piece of that puzzle is choosing to be exposed to images that are happy, positive and peaceful.
So, turn off the news and look at the Giraffes and Robots art on your wall instead!

2. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter/designer?
While studying biology at Brown I had a lot of friends from RISD. I would study my neuroscience textbooks while they painted and sculpted. I loved what I was learning, but I was also in awe of their completely different college experience. While I was spending all my time in labs, they were spending all their time in studios. That lifestyle was so foreign to me and also so interesting. Don't get me wrong, a lab can also be a very creative and fun place, and I was having such a good time, but there is something about doing art that is so appealing too.
Years later, while living in Barcelona, I fell in love with the way the city lives and breathes art. Everything in that city is art. The buildings, customs, history and people. I found myself wishing again that I could live the life of an artist. So, one day I went to a little corner art store and bought a blank canvas, a few paintbrushes and an acrylic starter set. I went back to my apartment to give it a go - and loved it! I was painting constantly and sometimes would be so into it that the sun would come up and I would realize I forgot to sleep!
After those two years spent painting daily in Barcelona, I became an artist. I still consider myself a scientist too. They are both parts of who I am and I think that my science background positively influences my artwork.

3. Where do you draw your inspiration?
From books, toys, photos, travel, play, good design, colors, artists, scientists, dinosaurs, people and meditation.

4. What’s your favorite item to create?
I am always creating new things and coming up with new ideas, so what would be a favorite now will probably change by next week. I love not knowing today what will be my favorite tomorrow.

5. What’s your best seller?
My best seller is the Pio Pio print, which includes a popular Spanish lullaby. I love how it elicits happy memories in people of all ages. From kids that know the song because their parents or grandparents sing it to them now, to adults that remember the song from their childhood. It makes me so happy to see their faces light up when they recognize the chorus. It is amazing how people react to the memory of a song. In this case, the art goes beyond the visual input and makes people smile through memories and music.

El Hipster is also a bestseller these days (for obvious reasons) and of course, my dinosaur prints are pretty popular too. Who doesn't love a dinosaur?

Scuba Giraffe, which is one of those early paintings I did in Barcelona (3rd), is also one of my bestsellers.

6. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
I first moved here to go to Brown many years ago. After graduation I moved to London and lived in Europe for ten years. I came back to Rhode Island for three years and worked in a lab at Brown and as a primary school Science Teacher in Providence. Then, I moved back to Europe for 5 years and came back to Providence four years ago. I love traveling and experiencing different cultures firsthand, so I move a lot. As you can see, Rhode Island is definitely a place I come back to often.

7. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
I love the Providence Artisan Market, the Providence Flea, and all the other many opportunities for artists. The art community is very supportive and a lot of fun. And I love that they have embraced and accepted a scientist into the mix.

8. Please include anything else you’d like to add:
I illustrated a children's book that my mother wrote about a Puerto Rican giraffe. It is called Tulipan, the Puerto Rican giraffe. It is available in both English and Spanish versions. The book was recently featured in a children's TV show in Puerto Rico, which is so exciting. It is for sale at Hope Returns on Hope Street.

Giraffes and Robots products are sold at the Providence Artisan Market and the Providence Flea.

Also, at the following retail stores:

Prints, postcards and T-Shirts, along with pieces from my collaborative collage project with Ada H, a collage artist, are for sale at Homestyle Interiors on Westminster Street.

Prints, postcards, T-Shirts and books are for sale at Hope Returns on Hope Street.

Prints, postcards, canvas bags and Copper Rockets jewelry are for sale at White Buffalo on Broadway.

Superhero and Dinosaur prints at Multiverse Comics on Broadway.

Chicken and Rooster prints at CLUCK on Broadway!

Prints are available at I want a Pony at the Somerville Flea.

Prints are available at The Cheeky Hound on Hope Street.


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