POP ARTIST & FIERCE DJ, SILVIA PRADA

POP ARTIST AND FIERCE DJ, SILVIA PRADA HAS MASTERED MANY TOOLS: CAMERAS, PAINTBRUSHES, GRAPHITE AND EVEN TURNTABLES.  A NATIVE OF SPAIN, SILVIA HAS BEEN DOCUMENTING OUR POP CULTURE HISTORY SINCE THE EARLY 2000s.  THE NEWEST ADDITION TO NEW YORK’S ART & NIGHTLIFE SCENE, SHE IS ALSO GIRLFRIEND TO KIM ANN FOXMANN OF THE FAMED HERCULES AND LOVE AFFAIR.
A FAN OF THE 90s OURSELVES, AND TAKEN BY HER CLEAN AND POPPY DRAWINGS, WE TRACKED DOWN THE ARTIST TO FIND OUT WHERE IT ALL BEGAN.  AS IT HAPPENS, MISS PRADA’S RESUME TURNED OUT TO INCLUDE SHOOTING DOG PORTRAITS, ART DIRECTING ALBUM ARTWORK, AND EVEN DOING VOICE OVERS FOR PORNO FLICKS.  WE EVEN ASKED HER TO DO A SERIES OF DRAWINGS JUST FOR US, OF THE BEAUTIFUL MODEL CHARLOTTE FREE.  IT RESULTED IN A DIRTY AFTERNOON, BREAKING BREAD AT  OUR DUMBO STUDIO (THAI RICE AND CURRY), WITH SILVIA, KIM ANN, CHARLOTTE AND MYSELF.
TEXT  Paul Bruno

 

 

DIRTY: WHERE IN SPAIN WERE YOU BORN?

 

SILVIA PRADA: I was born in Ponferrada, which is a city in the north of Spain where they spend lots of money on fast cars and they take so much drugs and alcohol.

 

D: MORE THAN THE REST OF SPAIN?

 

SP: Well… Actually north Spain is richest than south and it’s a fact. Also, in small cities, people are bored and they love excess!

 

D: HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN AN ARTIST, EVEN AS A CHILD?

 

SP: Oh, yes… I used to go after my classes to a painting studio with a maestro to learn techniques and academic drawing.

 

D: SO YOUR ART STUDIES BEGAN WHEN YOU WERE YOUNG?

 

SP: Most definitely. I studied Fine Arts in university, then I did my postgraduate in visual communication in Germany and my masters studies in Barcelona. But I have to say I was not drawing at all during all that years. I was producing photography and installations.  I just started to draw again in 2000. I got tired of all that crazy video and photography overdose.

 

D: WHAT TYPE OF PHOTOGRAPHS WERE YOU SHOOTING AT THE TIME?

 

SP: I was shooting dog portraits! All kind of breeds. After some ateliers with Laurence Weinier, Thomas Grünfeld and Jirí Georg Dokoupil, I started to show my dog photos in some galleries in Spain.

 

D: WHAT WAS THE FIRST ARTIST OR WORK OF ART THAT YOU REMEMBER LEFT AN IMPRESSION ON YOU?

 

SP: Andy Warhol….

 

D: WHAT INSPIRES YOU TO PICK UP YOUR PENCIL?

 

SP: Contemporary pop culture, the history of fashion photography, fashion advertising, cinema, music… and all the machinery surrounding this.

 

 

D: IN 2006 YOU PUBLISHED A VERY BEAUTIFUL, HARD-COVER ART BOOK OF A COLLECTION OF YOUR DRAWINGS. HOW DID THAT PROJECT COME ABOUT?

 

SP: That book is part of my promo strategy. It contains a selected compilation of all my work since 2004. I don’t much like portfolios, so I produce a book or a promo item every once in a while.  I published my first book in 2000. That was only 100 copies but was a perfect instrument to market and collect my work. My last promo production was a large-sized Richard Gere pin-up poster.

 

D: YOU RECENTLY MOVED TO NEW YORK. HOW HAS THAT BEEN?

 

SP: It’s really refreshing. I sold all my stuff in Barcelona and I came with 2 pieces of luggage. It’s the best way to arrive in this city — light!

 

D: IF YOU COULD MEET AND DRAW ANY ONE CELEBRITY’S PORTRAIT, WHO WOULD IT BE?

 

SP: Mmmm. I’m not really that kind of artist that are just fans of the famous, and develop their projects around their iconographic obsessions. I’m not like that. I’m a proper pop artist, and I’m more interested to portrait our contemporary history. I consider myself more like a portrait artist, like Miguel Angel, Rafael, Tiziano…. Tintoretto. They just were doing commissions about very important people. I consider myself a decorative artist.

 

If I have to choose someone, of course I would choose Madonna, as I have so many questions to ask her!

 

D: AND YOU ARE ALSO A DJ — HOW DID THAT START?

 

SP: It was really a coincidence. In 1999 a friend opened an amazing club in Barcelona, and he asked me to help him bring cool people there. I was tired of bad music and bad parties, so I threw a party, called Club Tropicana. That is where I started to DJ and I invited my friends to come and play too. I started to get other gigs and I also started to do events for magazines and brands, I consider those jobs part of my pop profile.

 

D: WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW?

 

SP: I’m just getting back to the gym and listening to WOLFRAM — “Fireworks,” the Sally Shapiro remix.

 

D: AND YOU ARE ALSO GIRLFRIEND TO DJ EXTRAORDINAIRE, & MEMBER OF HERCULES AND LOVE AFFAIR, KIM ANN FOXMANN. HOW DID YOU GIRLS MEET?

 

SP: Oh, thats really fun! I was doing this event for “Hercules Magazine” and the first “Hercules & Love Affair” album was out. There were not many people playing the stuff that Kim Ann was playing and that was exactly the kind of set I love. I booked Kim Ann and Andrew for that event and we had a lovely dinner at my favorite restaurant in Barcelona. We fell in love in that dinner — so quickly, so natural and so unexpected — we couldn’t help it! It was definitely love at first sight.

 

D: WHAT KIND OF SET WAS IT?

 

SP: She was playing a lot of classic house and techno and some disco. Mostly a lot of classic deep house, acid house, a lot of Chicago and Detroit classics. I remember she played Coco Steel and Love Bomb’s “Feel It,” which is one of her favorite tracks and she also played “This is Acid.”

 

D: YOU DID ILLUSTRATIONS FOR HER VIDEO CREATURE — ARE THERE ANY MORE CREATIVE COLLABORATIONS IN THE WORKS BETWEEN THE TWO OF YOU?

 

SP: Oh totally. I art directed her cover for Creature too and I’m working on her new stuff. We have upcoming projects as well.

 

 

D: ARE YOU A SPIRITUAL OR RELIGIOUS PERSON?

 

SP: I’m VERY spiritual.

 

D: WHAT IS YOUR TAKE ON ALL THIS 2012 END OF THE WORLD TALK?

 

SP: Oh the end of the world started around 2000 for me, or even before. There’s nothing making me satisfied or nothing exciting to me since half way through the 90s. I feel like we are filling up with tap water an almost done bottle of Chanel No.5 perfume: it’s not smelling good anymore.

 

D: TELL US A DIRTY STORY ABOUT YOU!

 

SP: Oh, this is awesome! I did a voice over for a really bad porno movie once. It included moans, heavy breathing, “oh YESS” and fake orgasms.

 

SILVIAPRADA.COM

 

 

 






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