Today we’d like to introduce you to Agustina Luna Bonaventura.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
As I type this with my right, my left hand burns in a bowl of iced tap water. I’m wondering how this set-up will work out tomorrow at my full-time gig as an animator/video editor. I’ve just absent-mindedly poured a pot of boiling water on (luckily, not my most dexterous) hand.
Although–as this moment exemplifies–the two are not always in sync, I’ve always enjoyed using my hands and my brain together to create as a form of self-exploration, as well as a tool to communicate without words (I’m a bit on the quiet side) and sort through strange emotions. I spent the first ten years of my life in my hometown, Buenos Aires, and the next eleven moving around the US–from Miami to San Francisco, then back to different parts of Florida.
I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression shortly after my maternal grandfather’s death when I was 15. He was a man with a big heart, skilled in all things crafts and food and gardening and machines. To this day, every car I draw goes out to him, this man with the collectible toy car collection and the talent of the world.
Please tell us about your art.
Things got a little rough for me around 2016 when I was finishing up my somewhat-worthless bachelor’s degree in English with a Film & Media Studies concentration and Studio Art minor. Between my paternal grandfather’s death (followed shortly by the death of my 17-year-old cat), my mom’s breast cancer diagnosis, and the effed-up relationship I stayed in for almost three years, I found myself crying on the bathroom floor more often than usual.
I turned to drawing even more than ever and, with my newly acquired drawing tablet, learned to not hate digital art so much. Although, until then, I’d turned my nose up to illustration work produced on a computer, I found it presented a challenge, a new field of exploration that proved quite cathartic. The freedom to erase and redo and keep everything contained in a little external drive became an obsession I ran to every night after work.
I wouldn’t say there’s anything revolutionary about my art. I use it to work through my emotions, to get things out there that might otherwise spin endlessly and painfully around in my head. I do hope, however, that others recognize themselves in my work and feel a bit of the relief I feel making it. At the same time, I want to make people question and toss away their rigid understanding of “femininity” as a soft, seen-and-not-heard quality that applies to all of us the same way. Stop shoving people into tight little boxes!
We often hear from artists that being an artist can be lonely. Any advice for those looking to connect with other artists?
I’m not big on social media but I’d recommend getting on Instagram. It’s the one social app I really use because it makes it really easy to find like-minded artists or artists who are doing something totally different and inspiring. It’s also a good tool for tracking down events (i.e., art fairs, calls for submissions or collaborations) happening either locally or around the world. And it’s a great way for others to find and reach out to you, too!
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
My work is always up on my website, www.lunadelsur.net, as well as on Instagram (@lunadelsur_). I try to keep my Ello (ello.co/little_bat) updated as well.
I have an e-shop (www.lunadelsur.storenvy.com), and frequently table at local art fairs with my prints, stickers, posters, and shirts. In fact, you can find me at the Small Press Fair (SPF’18) in Fort Lauderdale on November 11 from 12 to 6pm with fellow Florida-based artists Jessica Garcia (@themissjaws), Angie Garcia (@angievictoriagarcia), and Kathleen Elena Reyes (@misselenareyes).
I also sell some prints on Witchsy–look me up as Luna del Sur on their site. Because I work digitally these days, one of my favorite things about the process is picking out the right ways to print my illustrations and then holding the physical product in my hands, seeing how the same design can have a totally unique feeling depending on the printing format. Above all, I love meeting people at these local fairs that appreciate what I do, especially because when I first started putting my work out there it was really just a mood board for myself. Even if I don’t sell what I make, I’m over the moon watching different crowds react to and interact and connect with my work.
- Website: www.lunadelsur.net
- Instagram: lunadelsur_
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lunadelsurart/
- Other: www.lunadelsur.storenvy.com
Agustina Bonaventura (a.k.a. Luna del Sur)