Bold and Heroic: The Art of Adie Cruz
Updated: Jan 15, 2021
Meet the Visual Artist who is Heavily Inspired By Comics and Superheroes in Exclusive Interview
By Bridney C.
Adie Dela Cruz is a visual artist hailing from Manila, Philippines, who is currently residing in Connecticut. The 35-year-old comes from an art background and had family members who made art for fun.
Adie always wanted to be a visual artist as a child but was strongly advised against it by his parents for "practical" reasons. When he attended college, he majored in industrial psychology, and after graduating in 2007, he worked for a gas and oil company.
After feeling unfulfilled with his initial career choice, he saved up money for an internship in Bangkok with a national artist. After quitting his job in 2015,, he traveled to Thailand to learn sculpture and materials fabrication.
He then spent the next five years educating himself on different mediums and disciplines. He went from sculpture to art installation and later, murals and glass mosaics with other muralists in Manila.
Adie was active in fashion and costume design for television and print before he moved to New York in 2018. Since then, he has shifted his focus to painting and digital illustrations.
He considers his art style to be bold and bright, with the usage of vibrant colors to piece together art that evokes humor and a sense of nostalgia in people.
"Evoking an emotion is tricky, to be honest. More recently I found that it brings me joy when my work makes people smile or when they feel nostalgic about their childhood after viewing my work."
Adie has participated in a few art exhibitions in Asia and was one of many artists who participated in Terrificon, a comic book convention at Mohegan Sun. His art was recently displayed at Art=Gift, an exhibition at the Hygienic Art, an art gallery located in New London, Connecticut.
Art=Gift was the first art exhibition Adie has participated in since residing in Connecticut and decided to participate after seeing an open call for artists in November 2020. Over 200 of his caricature coasters was exhibited in a whole section of the art show.
Completing each coaster under four hours, he starts with priming the ceramic, pencil sketching the image, and painting it with acrylic. Then, he outlines his sketch and applies a gloss finish to his final product.
He was first inspired to create porcelain coasters by his boyfriend, who suggested to him the idea of painting on them during the pandemic quarantine. Adie started creating one iconic character a day within 6 months.
Each pop culture icon depicted in his coasters is from his childhood, and they are sentimental to him. "I didn't have any plans for it until the hygienic allowed me to exhibit this particular collection," says Adie.
His favorite superhero is Storm, also known as Ororo Munroe from the X-Men comic series. Not only does he love her costumes, but he says if he could have her superpower, he says he would love to be able to fly.
"Art heals me because it allows me to break myself down. Art is and will always be a reflective exercise for me."
Fun Fact: "hoybesh" means "hi friend" in Filipino.