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Image: Lucia Hierro - El Costo de la Vida -Independent Art Fair - LatchKey Gallery

Studio visit with Gaia

NATALIE KATES:  Where does the name Gaia come from? 

GAIA:  Gaia is the goddess of the earth in Greek mythology.  It is also a seminal hypothesis by the scientist James Lovelock.

NK:  Where were you raised?

G:  Manhattan.

NK:  Did you go to art school and, if yes, which one?

G:  Maryland Institute College of Art.

NK:  How old were you when you started pasting up your now iconic images on the streets?

G:  Eighteen

NK:  Around that time, the New York Times did an article on you, which catapulted you to street art stardom.  Has this been a curse or a blessing?

G:  It has been a true learning experience living through the highs and lows of the art world.

NK:  What influences you the most in relation to your art?

G:  The spontaneity of the streets, critical theory, delving into the history of places.

NK: Y ou now live in Baltimore.  What brought you there?

G:  School brought me here and the city has kept me.

NK: Your roommates are also artists; do you influence each other’s work?

G: Absolutely, it is such a beautiful thing having the company of close friends who have your back in a city that can be so dark yet so vibrant. The pace of each other’s working process keeps the drive alive in the studio.

NK:  If you could collaborate with another artist who would it be?

G:  Alfredo Jaar.  Because I want to learn how to think like him.

NK:  What projects are you currently working on?

G:  A massive mural project here in Baltimore and a lot of traveling throughout America and Europe.

NK:  What’s on your ipod play list?

G:  Wacka Flocka, Tommy Wright III, Mulato Astatke, Drake, Lil Wayne, and, yes, one song by Kelly Clarkson.

NK:  What are some words you would use to describe your work?

G: Equivocal.