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Sm{art}: Ana Benaroya

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Music festival poster with man's back facing viewer

My fear of blank wall space is what first led me to come across the blood-pumping, eye-popping art of Ana Benaroya. While searching through all the free newspapers and magazines at the library (no-cost collage materials!) I came across a gem of a cover illustration done by Benaroya and it graced my partially covered wall until I had to move out a few months later and start again. Though I have since resorted to using actual wall hangings as decoration (I know, so uncool), my love for Ana Benaroya's art has endured. If I could, I would plaster every inch of free wall and ceiling space in my bedroom with Benaroya's wonderfully vibrant drawings—the perfect art to get me up out of bed in the morning and ready to embrace the colorful day. Besides illustration, Benaroya also works in collage, screenprints, psychedelically poppy paintings, and, at least once, even shoes.

What I am most interested in now, however, is Benaroya's typography work. My chronic logophilia along with my penchant for nostalgia have combined to form a love for Benaroya's vibrant word art. Her particular, fun aesthetic has a resonance of childhood that I cannot resist.


Words make up a singing man's blonde beard and blank face.Black words stacked atop one anotherWords eating a chicken leg

Back in the day we were all typographists, doodling in our notebooks and making holiday cards for mom and dad, but Benaroya brings this primal, DIY style and hikes it up 500 notches to create letters and words that look animated, but are somehow lying still on the page. One of her most recent works, a mixtape cover for the Vivian Girls, exhibits this great ability of hers.

Mix tape cover with colorful words

My prediction: Benaroya's Horse Parts Alphabet will become the new Helvetica.

Like what you see? Check out Ana Benaroya's official website as well as her store and blog. Also, be sure to take a look at Benaroya's new, independently published book Men Eating Fruit, a collection of paintings of... well, I won't spoil it for you.

Further Reading: The LGBT Creative Series: Interview with Ana Benaroya [The Fox is Black]

Previously: Sophia Wallace: Not Your Typical Fashion Shoot, Jennifer Strunge's Cotton Monsters are Frighteningly Cool

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Did someone say...

... shoes! And chucks with lilac laces, no less. I dig the illustrations, especially the ones reminiscent of Schoolhouse Rock videos, "Interjections!" (that's a compliment)!