Born in Paris, lived in London and New York. Currently based in Miami.
What do you think of art: “Art is the best mark one can leave on earth.”
Favorite artist: “Mondrian because of his evolution as a person and as an artist. He was a true visionary and one of the first minimal artists that decided to go from very detailed realistic paintings of landscapes to pure and simple geometric shapes and primary colors. This sparkle of genius co-founded the post-modern movement.”
Favorite item: “Our collection of hand-crafted, lacquered wood trays and boxes, with the “Composition with red, yellow and blue” (1930). Our logo was inspired by this masterpiece, the horizontal lines signifying a sense of rest and calm, while the vertical lines communicating a sense of height.”
Favorite museum: “The Louvre in Paris. With over 35,000 objects from prehistory to the 21st century, in such a breathtaking historic monument, the Louvre is definitely a very unique place on earth.”
Favorite quote: “Experience is a truer guide than the words of others – Da Vinci”
Hobbies: “I love traveling and meeting new people from different cultures. I have visited more than 25 countries all over the globe, and I hope to continue to increase this list!”
Fun Facts/Hidden talents: “I feel at home everywhere I go!”
TALISSA PHILOGENE – The Store Manager
Born and raised in Haiti, resides in Miami.
What do you think of art: “Art is something yearning to be shared with, from one’s soul. In other words, a beauty that comes straight from an artist’s heart and reaches others’.”
Favorite artist: “Roy Lichtenstein, one of the first American pop artist to achieve widespread renown, and became a leading figure in the new art movement. Most of his works were inspired by comic strips, which later lead to a lot of criticism and accusation of plagiarism. Along with Andy Warhol, Lichtenstein’s graphic works had a lot of influence on the American pop culture and the art world itself.”
Favorite museum: “The Perez Art Museum Miami, which is a contemporary art museum located within the new museum Park in Downtown Miami.”
Favorite item: “The Eternal Spring sculpture by the French Artist “Auguste Rodin”, which evokes the happiness of a pair of lovers in which the man dominates the composition, sustaining the arching body of his lover that joints him in a very passionate kiss. In May 2016, a marble version was sold at auction for a then record-breaking 20 million dollars.”
Favorite quote: “I consider that the body is the only true clothing for the soul that allows its radiance to shine out – Auguste Rodin”
Hobbies: “I enjoy spending time with my family and watching documentaries about the human’s body (the reproduction system).”
Fun Facts/Hidden talents: “I love to cook.”
MICHAEL VENTURA – Mr. Smart
Born in New York City, Lived in the Dominican Republic. Currently lives in Miami.
What do you think of art: “Art is the way of bringing out the thoughts in each and every one of our heads.”
Favorite artist: “My favorite artist is Jean Michel Basquiat. He died very young so I always wonder what more could he have done with his art. His art makes me wonder and want to know what was going on in his head every time he made a new piece. His pieces have such color contrast and different positioning of different things in it that leave me wondering why he did a certain piece that way.”
Favorite item: “My favorite item is the Basquiat ‘Anthony Clarke’ skateboard. I feel this piece represents an image of Basquiat himself even though it’s not him. When I saw the piece, I felt a connection because I saw myself in the painting by the way he dressed and drew Anthony. Having similar features such as the dark skin, and the nappy hair.”
Favorite museum: “The Vatican is definitely the most amazing museum I’ve ever visited. It had such amazing structure, and the painted walls and ceilings simply leave you breathless.”
Favorite quote: “I don’t think about art when I’m working. I try to think about life. – Jean-Michel Basquiat”
Hobbies: “I love to take pictures and create videos.”
Fun Facts/Hidden talents: “I can be very hyper at times.”
ORHEL CABRERA – The Accomplished Artist
Born in Colombia, raised in Canada. Lived in Boston. Currently resides in Miami.
What do you think of art: “Art is arguably the most eloquent medium of communication when expressing our deepest thoughts and feelings. In this sense, art serves as a bridge between the subconscious of the artist and that of the spectator.”
Favorite artist: “Salvador Dali because his contributions to the surrealist movement revolutionized the art world and pop culture, and his legacy persists today. Dali’s eccentric personality drew just as much attention as his surrealist artworks did, and his influence has inspired important artists of our contemporary age like Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons. Dali’s explorations of Freudian psychology and the human unconscious in his dream-like works, confront our human frailty by addressing issues like our sublimated fears, obsessions, complexes and fixations. “
Favorite museum: “Boston Fine Arts Museum, it contains over 450,000 artworks making it the fourth largest museum in the United States. It is my favorite because it has one of the most comprehensive collections in the world. One can find works ranging from the Egyptian art, French Impressionism, Contemporary Art and more. Because surrealism is one of my favorite artistic movements finding Frida Kahlo, the Mexican surrealist artist’s work “Two Women” (1928), made my experience at the Boston Fine Arts Museum much more memorable. “
Favorite item: “Our three-dimensional resin representation of Dali’s work “The Burning Giraffe” (1937) (The Lady with Drawers) because through his use of Freudian symbology Dali brilliantly argues through his depiction of “drawers” for the sublimated fears and repressed sexuality of the central female figure, and arguably for that of women in society. Moreover, his recurrent use of “crutches” represent both our human frailty and the different structures we use to anchor us into the real world. “The Burning Giraffe” is my favorite work because just like he did in his most iconic work “The Persistence of Memory” where he challenged the rigidity and fixed concept of Time, through the melted clocks depicted, here Dali challenges the self-reliance and strength of our human nature. “
Favorite quote: “Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it” – Salvador Dali”
Hobbies: “During my free time I enjoy writing, reading, crocheting and sketching.”
Fun Facts/Hidden talents: “I absolutely love to play piano and to recite/write poetry.”
BOUTAINA EL MOUCHTARI – The Dreamer
Born in Casablanca, Morocco. Lived in Vancouver, NYC and now Miami.
What do you think of art: ” Art is the place where imagination meets reality. It’s a platform that helps balance our minds and souls.”
Favorite artist: “Rene Magritte because of his thought-provoking images. He would take ordinary objects and depicts them in very unusual context. Which never fails to amaze me. His imagery has influenced pop, minimalist and conceptual art.”
Favorite item: “My favorite item is ‘The Son of Man’ (1964) from Magritte. To me, the apple that’s placed in front of the man’s face represents the forbidden fruit, our sins, more specifically our greed. If we let our greed guide us, it will blind us completely. Neither we can see the world in front of us nor the world can see our truest self. Plus this piece was a self-portrait of Magritte. Which is quite interesting to me.”
Favorite museum: “Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Because of it’s large and versatile collection. They have everything from classical and Ancient Egypt to more modern art. My favorite section is the African, Ancient Egypt and Islamic Arts. Because it’s my History but I never had access to it in my own country. It felt amazing to experience that.”
Favorite quote: ” If the dream is a translation of waking life, waking life is also a translation of the dream.” René Magritte.
Hobbies: Writing and reading
Fun Facts/Hidden talents: “I love to write scripts and then turn them into movies.”