Hermosa artist Drica Lobo grows her collector base through high frequencies, colorful waves and multilayered moons
She’s giving off good vibrations.
- Written bySara Debevec
- Photographed byMonica Orozco
Drica Lobo started her career as journalist in São Paulo and moved to the U.S. from Brazil in 2003. Little did she know this trip was going to inspire her to take new avenues through colorful oceans and landscapes of infinite proportions. She traveled both the East and West coasts before she finally settled in Hermosa Beach in 2007.
Drica’s fascination for art began when she was a little girl, but it wasn’t until she moved to the South Bay that her art took a whole new turn. She became a full-time artist. As the South Bay artist community grew, so did she. One can say she was in the right place at the right time.
Drica’s art is vibrant, happy and colorful, with unique brushstrokes emanating the positive vibrations that the artist herself stands for. We start our conversation in her studio on Hermosa Avenue and naturally make our way down to the beach—the place that inspires her creativity.
“I want to paint what we are familiar with in a different way,” explains Drica, whose favorite color is 2 Green. Her unique paintings incorporate gradient techniques created by carefully mixing acrylic colors directly on canvas. It started with the sky, but slowly the gradients took over the entire canvas.
She draws inspiration from the moon because she is fascinated with it and has been obsessed with it ever since she was a little girl. The moon holds a unique presence in a lot of her paintings, and it comes alive through her textures.
“I think textures come from my longtime experience with oils,” she says. “I wanted to bring oils to the acrylic. I use it to bring the viewer closer to their subject. I just love incorporating all these different colors into textures—the golds and the silvers especially, since they slightly change in the light.”
For Drica, everything in life is connected to how we experience the sun’s energy. When she talks to me about the California sunsets, she says that she can literally hear the vibrant colors that make them up. What makes her paintings so captivating and different is the fact that she paints frequencies.
“I believe everything is made up of frequencies, and that is exactly why my waves come out the way they do.” She smiles and says, “Everything is frequency, and you want to keep frequencies high!” Drica wants people to look at her art and experience that “frequency on a higher level and the joy we have for life … or even just sitting at the beach and enjoying special moments.”
Growing up in Brazil, Drica enjoyed surfing—and that is reflected in her paintings. “I really like to switch the perspective, focusing on that surfer vision instead of painting the water from the beach,” she says. “I like to paint the beach looking out from the water.”
She recalls how the water itself—and the connection she had with it then—made her feel like a giant. That is exactly how I feel when I look at some of her paintings: majestic. I also feel that Drica not only brings out the surfer’s perspective but also the perspective of the environment itself.
Her solo show There is No Planet B at Resin Gallery in October last year really captured the essence of environmental consciousness. She created eight installations using recycled objects such as paintbrushes, art cleaning rags and even dried pieces of paint from her mixing tray.
As part of the exhibition she also created hanging fluorescent acrylic trash filters, so the audience could look at each one of her beach paintings through the lens of pollution. “I wanted to give people a choice: Do you want to see the work with trash in it, or do you just want to keep seeing the beauty?” says Drica, whose father used to own a recycling company in Brazil.
Drica says being an artist is truly all about your level of commitment and how much time you are willing to give yourself to be who you want to be. “I love being part of this community and the South Bay arts scene, and I think it’s going to grow more and more and really become an international art platform.”
She currently lives in Hermosa Beach, and her work is included in public and private collections around the world including Brazil, the United States, Singapore and China. She is also a member of Hermosa Beach Artist Collective and Foundation of Local Arts in California.
In 2019 she hopes to show her work in Japan, since there is a large community of people there who love the style she paints in. Hawaii also has amazing artists whom she connects to, and she is interested in showing more of her work in her home country of Brazil. She is excited to take her South Bay views worldwide because, she says, “California is the place everyone wants to be.” Drica’s paintings truly capture that higher frequency we tap into living on this side of the world.
More than a pipe dream.