HOLA! USA wants to empower the Latinx community with narratives about the contributions that Latinos have made in the U.S. across the full spectrum — music, fashion, entertainment, business, health, beauty and wellness. It is time to celebrate our Latinidad in all its glory. These are our stories; this is Latinx.
The world is quickly getting acquainted with Vic Garcia. The young artist, who is of Cuban descent (and Andy Garcia’s nephew), has his art displayed in every major entertainer’s home. Power couple Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez have a piece of what Vic calls “VGA World” in their living room, while Colombian heartthrob Maluma currently has a work in development. And there’s a reason why everyone is a fan—VGA World is fun, quirky and a totally unique vision of artistry.
Vic Garcia talks to HOLA! USA about his art
“VGA World is another dimension and the place where all my work lives. Every piece is made up of characters who all contribute to spreading good energy and good vibes throughout their space,” Vic tells HOLA! USA about his “doodles” that are always changing. “The population is made up of individuals with their own story, personalities and traits. Imagine a world where there are no superiors, no discrimination and no judgement, and that’s the world I have created.”
Keep scrolling to find out how Vic got into painting, how his culture influences his work and how he hopes to change the world...
HOLA! USA: When did you start painting?
“It was as a business student in Boston, searching for a suitable path and no interest in art, that VGA was discovered. What started as pen and marker drawings on printing paper quickly evolved into a whole world populated by an overflow of characters I created. Using my art to express things I never could with words, my freestyle work and newly realized passion soon began to infest my room from walls to beneath the bed. Everyone, from my friends to guests wanted to take a piece of VGA home with them, but it wasn't until after college, when I went to work for my dad that it became obvious that art had completely taken over my life. I naturally got lost in the world I created and it motivated me to make the decision to go full-throttle.”
Why did you choose to specialize in doodling?
“Everyone can doodle. When I started to do it every day and filling walls and spaces with pieces of paper is when I realized it was more than a drawing, it was my passion. I saw it developing into something that I imagined would be bigger and could expand beyond paper. First I evolved into canvases, and now murals and even clothes. I have exciting projects coming up where my characters will turn into toys and statues. The world is endless and I stay up sleepless nights turning my doodles into BIG dreams.”
Where do you get your inspiration from?
“I am inspired by my day to day life and the people I come across. As an uncle of 10, kids are the main inspiration for me. A teacher once told me to stop doing stick figures, and that’s why I do them, in honor of that teacher. I am also inspired by other artist and creative forces. Some of my greatest role models are Walt Disney, Oprah Winfrey, Ralph Lauren, KAWS, Takashi Murakami and Pharrell Williams. Most importantly, my parents and grandparents, who without them, there wouldn’t be VGA.”
"I am a first-generation Cuban-American who has never been to the island my family fled, but hope to one day bring my art to a free Cuba"
And does your heritage inspire you at all?
“I feel that my heritage is very important into the development of who I am as a person. I am a first-generation Cuban-American who has never been to the island my family fled, but hope to one day bring my art to a free Cuba. My work ethic comes from being raised knowing that my grandparents and parents risked everything to leave Cuba with only the clothes on their back. They had to start a new life for the better of their kids and the family that followed. This motivates me to be the best I can be at my craft and is what inspires me to try and better the world as I see it. With the encouragement of my parents, I was shown that if I put my heart and passion into what I love, everything I can imagine can become a reality.”
Do you have any celeb clients?
"Manny Machado and his wife were the first to hang a piece of VGA World in the entrance to their house. This moment solidified my dedication to the start of my career. Other well-known talents who currently have a piece of my #VGAWorld are Bad Bunny, Zion, Jennifer Lopez & Alex Rodriguez, John Wall, James Johnson, Justice Winslow, Nate Robinson, Yonder Alonso, Ryne Stanek, Liam Hendriks and meanwhile in development are pieces for Maluma, Lebron James, Tristan Thompson and Jaxson Hayes."
Has anyone ever asked you to make a special piece for them?
“I feel that every piece from a canvas, mural and t-shirt tells its own story and has its own purpose. It is nice at times to be able to get deeper and connect with a specific client on a certain piece. When I do this, it makes it personal for the person or moment I am sharing. Just recently I was approached, to collaborate with One Eleuthera Foundation and Conch Coconut to give back to the Bahamas in an effort to relieve those impacted by Hurricane Dorian. This VGA Studios designed t-shirt was a very special moment for me in helping our neighbors and a place where I grew up traveling to.”
Do you have any advice for young Latin artists?
"You have to believe in yourself first and foremost and do what you love. There’s going to be bumps in the roads but it’s in those moments that you grow. All different types of people are going to tell you all different types of things but you have to soak in only what inspires you to be better. If you put enough hard work and passion into whatever you do, you are destined for greatness. Surround yourself with people that can only make you better and bring out the best in you. Most importantly have fun and #SmileAlways."
Why do you think it’s important for the Hispanic culture to be represented in art?
“Being Hispanic and a minority, it is important to come together with your community and make an impact for the better of the world. There’s a lot of crazy things that are happening within the world, and through art we want to show those who are struggling that there’s light at the end of the tunnel and that they can do it too. If they have a passion for art and see the art world being represented by other Hispanics they will hopefully be inspired to take a risk and do the same.”
"A teacher once told me to stop doing stick figures, and that’s why I do them, in honor of that teacher"
What do you hope your art brings to the world?
“I am motivated to #InspireTheYouth any chance I get. Children can #DreamBIG if they put their mind, passion and devotion towards what they love. Kids are the future and every time my paint touches a canvas, wall, or paper, I have a vivid intention of what I want to share with the others. I want people to connect with my world, disconnect from the crazy world we are living in and reconnect with their inner child. Today, my ability to bring good vibes and happy people into #VGAWorld stimulates my heart and passion into expanding on what I love.”