Arantxa Recio is a Spanish illustrator and designer based in Zaragoza, Spain. Selling her wares under the pseudonym Harsa Pati, her creations are fun and fresh and make spectacular use of colour and shape. Prints, ceramics and individual designs blend the lights and brights that we associate with traditional Spanish decor with folksy characters and modern slogans, such as surf your life. There’s a beach-bum muralists aesthetic to Arantxa’s work that we love. From nudes, partying, surfing, and skating to social issues and charity-focussed images, this illustrator’s subject matter is vast and exploratory.
Arantxa studied at the School of Arts in Zaragoza, specialising in illustration and graphic design. While studying she began to develop her distinctive style, identifying with lowbrow and outsider art while simultaneously finding influence in Expressionism, Dadaism, and Surrealism. Her use of humour and graffiti-like lettering, combined with an amazing use of palette, and bold graphic shapes, makes for attention-snatching work that warms the heart and calms the nerves.
Having exhibited at European art festivals and many exhibitions, collaborated with advertising agencies, and been featured by a variety of publications, Arantxa has learnt well-deserved notoriety as an exceptional image-maker. Her attitude to creating work is free, experimental, and above all fun, which is pretty evident when looking at her work and explains the varied narratives that she deals with. From right-on and socio-political works, such as creating murals and artwork for information booklets for anti gender violence campaigns, to zines and prints that explore tradition and contemporary lifestyle, everything has a positive edge.
A browse of Arantxa’s Etsy shop offers up thread-bound linen notebooks, storybooks and street art, however, our firm favourites are her ceramics. These range from bowls to hand-painted ceramic botijos featuring cat faces, typography and pattern. We love the fusion of traditional Spanish pottery and language with contemporary designs, identities, and narratives and can’t wait to hear more news of shows and exhibitions nearer to the UK. Arantxa Recio is a ray of sunshine and an awesome creative.
Words: Emily Beeson | @younggoldteeth