by Aminath Ifasa
  • 2 minute read
  • July 22, 2020
Meet The Dubai-Based Artist Behind The Stunning Illustrations For Villa 88’s Latest Issue

Inside the ‘Inspire’ section of Villa 88‘s ‘The Victory Issue’, you’ll find a series of illustrations of inspiring regional women who are powering through the scene. The creative force behind these artworks is Alicia Goveas, a Dubai-based artist whose natural flair for art breathed life into our latest edition, one that was produced remotely as we navigated the COVID-19 crisis.

Illustration of Afra, Ahad and Alia bin Haider of ILLUSTRELLA Moda by Alicia Goveas

“Bringing their beautiful abayas, and their patterns, colors and textures to life was such a novel experience for me,” says Alicia. “It was a refreshing breath of air to work on their facial features. Arab women are beautiful,” she adds. She created the illustrations using Procreate, perfecting them with brush tools, such as the airbrush, watercolor pen and the stipple effect. Her love of creating art and eye for detail accentuated the distinct features and personalities of each woman. And the resulting illustrations are truly remarkable.

Alicia Goveas

Originally from India and raised in Dubai, Alicia is a self-taught artist who takes great pleasure in creating works that convey a message. “It’s my aim to leave this world better than how we found it,” shes shares. Among her most remarkable series of body paint art is one that reflects on the issues of poverty and famine in South East Asian countries. The works shine a discomforting spotlight on what truly matters, encouraging viewers to contemplate on the harsh realities that surround them. As an artist, she feels it’s her responsibility to educate and inspire people.

Having grown in a multicultural setting, Alicia’s work reflects the rich vibrancy of her native India and the allure of the UAE. She became a global sensation when she emulated Zayn Malik using her makeup tools, ahead of the singer’s visit to the UAE for his first solo concert in 2016. She tricked many people into thinking she was Zayn, which she recalls as one of the most unique moments of her life.

But it hasn’t been an easy road for Alicia and she has learnt to take criticism with a grain of salt.If I had a penny for every time someone called me crazy, I’d be a billionaire,” she laughs, referencing how thinking outside the box isn’t always welcome. “I’ve received a lot of negative comments, but I’ve realized that people’s opinion of you is their business, not yours,” she adds.  “But no one who is ‘normal’ has ever achieved greatness. A little bit of madness is a must.” We agree.

Inside Alicia’s word

What has been your favorite quarantine pastime?

Cooking, I’ve never done it before.

Which city would you like to visit?

Tokyo, Japan.

What’s your favorite design trend?

I’ve been loving minimalism recently.

What has been your guilty pleasure during this lockdown?

Lemon bars and brownies.

What has the COVID-19 pandemic taught you?

To slow down, and stop and appreciate the simple things in life.

What was the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Growth begins when you’re aware of things and behaviors that no longer benefit you or those around you.

What’s the one thing you’re tired of people asking you?

“Can you transform me into a celebrity using makeup?”

Who has been your biggest inspiration?

Alicia keys and Michelle Obama.

What’s something you don’t see yourself doing 5 years from now?

Settling for stability and the mundane normalcy of adulthood.

What keeps you up at night?

People. Their minds and how differently we think, feel and perceive things.

Images courtesy of Alicia Goveas

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