Originally hailing from Barcelona, the London-based digital painter Ignasi Monreal has tapped into the zeitgeist. Spanish artists have long contributed a strong and clever aesthetic to the design world, and this artist is no different.
There is a suave and knowing youthfulness to Monreal’s work, something that has snagged some pretty hip jobs for the artist. You can see his work in the background for FKA Twigs’s “2 Weeks” video, featured in Swarovski and Dunhill campaigns, and gracing issues of fashion/design magazines like Wallpaper* and Odda.
Monreal escapes being tragically hip, though. When you look at his work – especially some of the pieces done for his site Plato Davinci, a collaboration with Davinia Arias (“our brain fart of transcendental crazy shit,” as they describe it) – you think “coooooool” but you also chuckle a little.
This is a guy who doesn’t take himself too seriously; hence the portrait of Snoop Dogg wearing a chihuahua-print shirt, or Dolly Parton enjoying the company of a rainbow and some butterflies. Many of his celebrity portraits sport pinkish-red eyes, which ties in well with the sort of stoner humor that pervades his work. There are a few very clever entries in the “Impossible Dream Cover” series – imaginary magazine covers such as Playboy flaunting Anna Wintour as the cover bunny.
Keep an eye out for Monreal – this kid is going places. High, high places.