Dominick Mouroz is a graphic designer by training and a barista by trade, practicing internet-based, mixed-media and collage art on the side. With a mother from Kerry and a father from France, an Irish accent – unmistakably southwest – is satisfyingly cross-cut with Gallic good looks. Catching Dominick before he departs for pastures new and headier in Berlin, masc joins him for something of a nostalgic meander around the Barrack Street area of Cork, and a little bit beyond.
On offline versus online creative practice: “I realised after college that graphic design was not something I would like to do as a job or career. I had always been artistic as a child, then as a teenager I got more into messing around with images digitally. When I was in college, I took a more hands-on approach for my projects, making a lot of mixed-media work or making things by hand before then bringing them on to the computer to add a digital spin. I miss making things with my hands".
On perceptions of digital art: “I feel it is unfairly dismissed. People are slow to wake up to the very real artistic medium that the online world represents. I think for a long time it was seen as a cop-out compared to traditional art, as it is all made on the computer and people see that as an easy option. Regardless of your methods of creating art, if you don't have the creativity or the ideas behind it – if your ideas are shitty – then it doesn't matter if you can paint or draw well. I think it’s starting to be taken a lot more seriously especially as everything goes digital. There are many new avenues opening up in the digital art world, new programs and methods and software enabling us to get to new levels. It’s growing faster than traditional art methods have in hundreds of years".
On the aesthetic of his work: “Overall, it's creepy-cute. I like to use a lot of visually textured or patterned backgrounds. I love using eyeballs and teeth, along with skin and meat textures, but then contrasted against soft pink or cute backgrounds. I like to cut out portraits of people’s faces from old photographs and add different textures and backgrounds. I am influenced by a lot of different things from everywhere. I find new influences on the daily, be it a pattern in someone’s jumper or something I've seen in the freezer in Tesco. Ever since I was really young I've always used twisted subject matters in one way or another. With art, a good reaction and a disgusted reaction mean the same to me. Art is created to instil feelings and thoughts in the viewer. The only reaction I don't want someone to have to my work is indifference or boredom. Any other reaction and you've made some sort of impact".
On queering images of Donald Trump [‘Donna J Trump'], Vladimir Putin [‘Vladimir Pouting’] and Kim Jong Un [‘Kim Jong Hun’]: “I’ve always had an interest in politics but I never knew how to communicate this in my work. I’m not that good at writing or being really deep so messing with the portraits of these dickheads is my way of being political but in a poking fun kind of way. Queering these people is something I know they would hate to see and I find it funny. I was blocked by the President of Chechnya’s official Instagram when I tagged him and Vlad kissing in an edit I did of them. Hilarious".
On swapping Cork for Berlin: "I feel sad to be leaving, so many amazing things have happened here in this little city and I’ve met so many amazing people over the years. But I know Cork will always be my base to come back to eventually, it's where all my nearest and dearest live or come from. I'm excited to start this new chapter in my life, in a place that has such a huge art and LGBTQ scene. Im looking forward to getting involved in lots of new projects and advancing as an artist".
On how his sexuality influences what he does and how does it: “Being gay has given me a completely different outlook on things in my life as a whole. I went to school in a small town, I was always one of the weird kids; stood out, was different. Feeling like you're constantly standing on the outside looking in, it makes you think differently and perceive things in a different light. Over the years, that [fed] into how I create my art and how my thought processes work and that's great. Now I don't feel as much like I’m standing outside looking in. I feel more unique and like I’m going against the grain – in a good way".
Be enthralled by Dominick's work here.