The very Stylish artist Javier Ávila always loved fashion as a child, in fact he “Love’s all things beautiful and stylish.” Born in Mexico, Javier moved to San Francisco Ca where he started painting at 16 years old, worked as a dresser for a theater company. And at 18 became an apprentice to a milliner from New York who taught him to make hats, later to break away and start his own hat business catering to an exclusive clientele in San Francisco for about four years.
( Javier and his portraits of Josephine Baker) Photo credit: Will Vaults
Javier worked in theater production, fashion hat accessories, and segwayed into costume designing before moving to New York where he started interior design, but was encouraged to return to painting after a short hiatus by his friends. Painting a portrait of his mother in 2006 “rebooted” his painting and he has been going strong ever since.
Loving to paint elegant and stylish portraits of famous and iconic women, Javier has created a series of very beautiful and influential woman of the arts such as Josephine Baker, Audrey Hepburn, and Jennifer Lopez.
Before starting a work of art, Javier loves to conduct deep research on his subjects. Being self -taught, his lets his inspiration flow into his work, usually while listening to music and surrounding himself with objects that relate to the subject he’s working on.
(Sophia Loren, Maria Felix, Audrey Hepburn, and Cher by Javier Avila) Photo credit: Will Vaults
Javier feels that artist play an important role in making people think, not just about the beauty of the world around them but also the beauty that is within them. Javier told me that his work has evolved over time becoming, “more fine tuned”, but sort of stayed the same in a way. Experimenting more with different techniques, his work has become “more-clean” and refined “producing a stronger statement.” Inspired by the great masters like “Gustav Klimt” and “Diego Rivera” he likes to combine his love of fashion, jewelry, and clothing in his work, despite the fact he is regarded as a “pop-artist.”
(Maria Felix Portrait by Javier ‘Avila) Photo credit: Kenneth Norwich
The next collection of paintings that Javier is working on is the “Chanteuse Collection” which will feature “Sade”, “Amy Winehouse”, “Grace Jones”, “Billy Holiday” and “Anna May Wong” the first Chinese American female movie star! This series will explore the darker side and concepts of love, which will have a more 1950’s spin.
Javier Avila loves the fact that his work is fun and makes people happy, especially when people notice the hidden signatures in his painting as well as the story behind some of jewels or clothing the subjects in his paintings are wearing.
When Javier is creating, he is usually by himself so “the artistic life can be a bit lonely.” To counteract this he told me he just goes to parties. A big turn off for Javier is “bad manners and rudeness” and people who have no compassion.”
This charming, intelligent, and fashionable artist reflects these attributes in his work and is certainly bound for fame A’ la Andy Warhol!
(Feature Photo credit: Kenneth Norwich)