New York-based artist Jojo Anavim is known for his mixed media art, with a fanbase of collectors like Amar’e Stoudemire, Seth McFarlane, Selena Gomez, Big Sean, Sheldon Adelson, Paris Hilton, and Daymond John. His background in consumer marketing and brand development and as a creative consultant for brands such as W Hotels and Universal Music Group gave Anavim hist start in commercial marketing and brand development, which eventually lead to exploring fine art in 2013.
His colorful work is vibrant, playful, and rich, paying homage to contemporary art greats Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, and Jasper Johns. Catch the nostalgia of the brands and packaging he was surrounded by as a child in Long Island, New York – down to the LifeSavers his grandmother would always carry in her purse.
Anavim’s artworks are part of permanent collections in museums and hotels around the country, including Dream’s Downtown and Midtown Hotels in New York City, the Coca-Cola Archives Museum in Atlanta, The Suite Sixteen Suite at Madison Square Garden in New York City, and Surf Lodge Hotel in Montauk, New York. He continues to produce works for luxury buildings and collectors across the US.
What’s your background? How did you first begin creating art?
I was always creative as a kid, but there was never a master plan to become an artist as my profession. Art was just a hobby. At the same time, I was always obsessed with packaging and design, especially among everyday products. I’d draw and doodle on anything including my school desks. Eventually, a graphic design class senior year of high school gave me more clarity on how I could make my creative vision a viable career option.
Commercial art design became a natural fit after I graduated from college, but I quickly felt like I hit a glass ceiling and needed to find new ways to release that creative voice in my head, which eventually led me to painting and mixed media artwork where I am today.
What inspires you?
Since I was little, I have always drawn to commercial packaging. I used to look forward to supermarket trips as a kid just to see the graphics and illustrations on all the candy, cereal boxes, ice cream boxes, etc., which has continued to inspire my artwork today.
What does your artwork represent? How do you hope your collectors feel when viewing your artwork?
I still remember the feeling I had when I’d open a fresh box of Crayons. The smell triggers all kinds of emotions inside me to this day. That nostalgia is what I’m trying to articulate through my artwork and what I want my collectors to feel when viewing. Art is so personal so when someone acquires a painting, I feel like a piece of me is living and breathing on their wall. It’s always humbling.
I understand you are a collector yourself. Tell us about your personal art collection?
You recently opened your own gallery in Roslyn, New York. Can you tell us more about that project and how you came to open it?
I spent some time during quarantine with my family this year in my hometown of Roslyn, NY. There’s a beautiful historic village in Roslyn, and I happened to walk by a vacant store there one afternoon. I immediately jumped on the space – at first it was only meant to be a short-term pop-up, but I’ve since rolled it into a permanent gallery. To learn more: www.jojoanavim.com