Manzello’s Passion

Gabrielle Manzello

I’m Gabrielle Manzello, and I am currently a senior in high school in Long Island, New York. I will be attending Parsons School of Design with a focus on communication design. Currently, I’m focusing on exploring mediums and understanding how I can utilize elements of design to create pieces that I, as well as viewers, can resonate with.

You can find Gabrielle on Instagram.

I really appreciate how fluid art is and how visual expression can transcend a multitude of ideas and feelings. I never planned on making art such a big part of my life, but naturally, I have become enveloped in observing art around me and learning to create myself. I think one of the most freeing aspects of life is realizing that we owe it to ourselves to spend our limited time doing what we are naturally passionate about. 

These are some pieces that I did last year, and although my style has changed a lot since then, these come from a time when I was beginning to take art more seriously. I wanted to depict topics, ideas, feelings that were somewhat uncomfortable to me through a lens of bright design. 

Wage War

I made this during a time when I felt completely drained by my obligations and overwhelmed by the persistence of time, as it felt like time continued and I was never catching up. A crucial factor of growing up is learning to prioritize responsibilities and at this time I was focused on working and earning money, but faced the hard realization that it was not fulfilling me. Instead I felt isolated, tired, and as if I was wasting the one thing in life I could never get back. Strangely enough this piece means something entirely different to me today. In a time where unemployment is at an all time high and I am dying to work, I am still trapped in my consumerist mindset and helpless in feeling truly fulfilled as time continues.

Soul Strip

Soul Strip takes a new perspective on accepting death. I wanted to depict the subject of death in a new light by contrasting it with symbols of life and fluidity, rather than dark macabre features that instill fear or dread in viewers. Something as natural and inevitable as death should not be feared or avoided, but embraced and accepted. The idea of death helps remind us how human we are.

Protect and Neglect

Growing up is a confusing time of gaining new freedom, yet feeling trapped within circumstances you can not control. Even those who try to help us grow may not realize there is sometimes more harm in trying to protect someone rather than letting them flourish on their own.

Container of Family Sayings

This is the most recent piece out of these. For me, there is fear involved with the idea that you are a result of your family. Growing up, it has been so important to think of myself as an individual rather than an inevitable follower of the people I grew up with. Even among my peers, there is this worry that we will inherit all the traits from our parents that we despise. Behavior is very dependent on how we are raised and it is crucial that we develop our own values, beliefs, and peace to separate from the anger we may have been raised on. You are your own person, not just a result of a childhood.

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