Branda. Óscar Brandariz (La Coruña, Spain, 1973)
From a very young age, Óscar Brandariz, aka Branda, has felt drawn to the ordinary people and objects around him and is obsessed with depicting them, whether on a bar napkin or a huge mural. A voracious consumer of comics and satirical periodicals since childhood, his artistic career began with punk rock, designing album covers and painting murals in the 1980s. He always knew that he wanted to become an artist. Miró was his first inspiration, but he discovered a more precise language for what he wanted to do in the dark humour of Equipo Crónica’s Pop art and eventually found his own voice while studying Fine Art at the University of Pontevedra, from which he graduated in 1997. Branda firmly believes in the regenerative and healing power of art to help us through life’s difficulties, and he therefore makes a point of conveying optimism and good humour.
He currently lives and works in Barcelona, where he juggles his intense creative activity as a painter and sculptor with various illustration, advertising and set design projects. He has participated in numerous solo and group shows in Spain, France and especially Germany.
Branda is a keen observer of human nature and defines his particular style in the Catalan language as costumisme urbano which, artistically transcribed, refers to typical city characters or atmospheres that the artist passes through his filter to give them a highly personal, humorous twist. To create his work, he spends his time watching people closely and analysing their behaviour. He then commits these living scenes to memory, draws the people riding on the bus or standing in front of a grocer’s and finally paints them in his studio. He likes to capture alterations in people’s normal patterns of conduct, depicting the furtive gazes of anonymous individuals who seem connected or the casual appearance of elderly people in sportswear.
Branda’s primary medium is acrylic on paper or panel, but he also creates emphatically three-dimensional polychromed wood sculptures.