We had the good fortune of connecting with DePaul Vera and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi DePaul, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I felt a powerful connection to art and art history at a very young age. I understood my curiosities and ideas could be explored, executed, and exaggerated best through art. This is how I’ve always known my calling was portraiture. Most of my sketchbooks throughout my life are full of portraits. It was a natural transition of branding myself as such.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Objects find their way to me. I never chase them. They land at my feet on the sidewalks. They arrive from events, appear from consignment shops, reveal themselves after text messages. They are used and discarded, begging me to save them from oblivion, hoping I’ll make room for them in my storage, on my walls, or in my journals. So many things–maybe too many things–but they’re mine. I filter through thousands of images from mass media as a means of finding visual solace contrasted with hatred. Only then can I visualize how my imagination and my reality taunt, infuriate, and inspire each other.
My collages are not jigsaw puzzles but more so like Rubix cubes. All jumbled up, each tell their own story and may be similar to the next, but until arranged accordingly, they won’t ever truly complete a narrative, and they never will. Why should they? Are they supposed to? I don’t believe so; for the work is not meant to chaperone an experience, nor is it necessarily forcing a call to action. More so just allowing space for the audience to contemplate the conflict between their biases and prejudices about my content.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
My favorite cousin visited me last year after living in South Beach for a few years. It was lovely being able to show her around. Our adventures started on the mainland at the Bayside Marketplace on Biscayne. Complete with slushie bars, vendors, and a giant Ferris wheel. We rode on the Millionaire’s Row Cruise and saw the beautiful homes on the shore. Next was my favorite lobster joint, Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls. I like to bring everyone who visits me to this mini restaurant. After returning to the beach, we went shopping on Lincoln Rd, the mall district. Closing out our adventure at the South Point Pier to catch the sunset against the water. It made for a lovely walk back to my apartment.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
“A little story about a powerful business idea.” The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann, was the perfect little pick-me-up I needed. It has five laws of stratospheric success that I keep returning to throughout the year.