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Javier Mariscal

Javier Mariscal

  • Artist

Valencian designer, adopted by Barcelona. "In 2050 I ́ll be 100 years old". Mariscal ́s life is a love affair
with drawing.

Javier Mariscal was born into a big family in the darker days of the post-war era in Spain. The Mediterranean, the albufera, the light, the friendships, the bars, the streets, the joy to live irrevocably mark his professional trajectory and personal life. From an early age he looks at the world imagining new shapes, stories and characters while escaping all stereotypes and any kind of labeling.

At the end of the 60s, he outgrows his beloved Valencia and moves to Barcelona where his senses are tinted with graphic inks and invaded by posters, billboards, colorful bags, and the giant neon lights that dress up an open and creative city with the "fascinating colors of human extravagancies". This is a Mariscal that awakens the counterculture and gives in to his underground comic strip phase: his Garriris, a couple of hippies that ride a Vespa around the coast and play tag with the moon. With these characters he yearns to build another world and create a different way of enjoying life, he places his characters in a frontier territory "where huge masses, earth and water, respect each other".

At the end of the 70s, he draws his most poetic piece in only three syllables, changing the projection of his adoptive city: Bar Cel Ona (word play in Catalan, which literally means "Bar Sky Wave", that sounds like Barcelona). A decade later, when Barcelona is at the height of design madness a new Mariscal blossoms, a Mariscal that thinks outside the box, multifaceted and non-classifiable that also starts a family. He risks and challenges himself, moving through all the media, from analog to digital and dares to try all artistic disciplines in his reach: graphic design, landscape design, painting, sculpture,
illustration, animation, product design, interior design; while never betraying his identity of drawing.

His audacity runs with the great challenges he takes up. Designing the mascot for the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, "that dog, squished by a truck on the highway" named Cobi, will be the starting point for his Estudio Mariscal in an old leather factory, five minutes away from the sea. And so, the big commissions arrive in which Mariscal imprints his particular universe: vital, full of stories, cartoons, fun calligraphies, and of course his distorted lines that long to break the limits. "They pay me to have fun!".

His trips to California, Japan, Paris, or Portugal decisively influence his drawings. He works with designers, engineers and architects such as Arata Isozaki, Alfredo Arribas, Fernando Salas, Fernando Amat, Nazario or Pepe Cortés and with companies like Memphis, Akaba, Bidasoa, BD Ediciones de

Diseño, Moroso, Nani Marquina, Vowerk, Equipaje, Alessi, Sangetsu, Magis, Cosmic, Amat3, Santa &Cole, Lalique and Phaidon.

He wins the "Premio Nacional de Diseño" in 1999 and exhibits in the Georges Pompidou Center in Paris, and participates in the Kassel Documentary, to which several retrospectives and up like: Mariscal Drawing Life in the London Design Museum, Mariscal en La Pedrera or The Art Player in Korea.Illustrations and comics strips invade covers and pages in the New Yorker, El Pais and the Japanese magazine Apo.

In 2010, Javier Mariscal once again changes the game to venture in to animated film with "Chico & Rita" along side Fernando Trueba. The movie wins a Goya Award and is nominated to the Oscars for Best Animated Picture.

As of 2015 a renwed Mariscal illustrates the elevators in the Hotel OM in Barcelona, the 75th anniversary of the Colegio de Arquitectos Técnicos, designs the public playgroun Benito Urban, the poster for the Latin Beat Festival in Japan, exhibits in the Ignacio Lassaletta Gallery and designs the Sabina chair,
among dozens of other projects.

In 2016 Mariscal looks for the simplest way to bring his work closer to new markets first with Mariscal Portraits (commissioned portraits, digitally drawn) and not long after with Mariscal Store, an online shop that offers his signed prints on high quality paper.

During 2017 he designs the anniversary campaign sports magazine AS 50, some animatics for the emblematic Quad Cinemas in New York, he illustrates the summer cover of the New Yorker and a new mascot for the multinational ROCA.

Mariscal is currently working on the preliminary drawings of a personal project, an animated documentary movie co-directed with Fernando Trueba, a comic book that explains the formation of our planet and the creatures that live on it, and the sketches for a travel journal of Los Angeles for the French brand Luis Vuitton.

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