Parra

Surreal figures in a Neo-Pop style

Parra (he/him) was born in 1976 in Maastricht, and now lives and works in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Museum Shows

In 2012, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art commissioned Parra to create a 60-foot mural. Titled Weirded Out, he was inspired by the reclusive singer Kate Bush. The artwork now belongs to the museum's permanent collection.

Did you know?

In-partnership with Nike SB, Parra was invited to design the official outfits for several national teams participating in the Olympic Games 2021. It was skateboarding’s debut at the games, with 13-year old Momiji Nishiya taking gold in her Parra jersey.

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Collaborations with Parra

Avant Arte and Parra have one upcoming collaboration.

Practice overview

Parra’s paintings capture moments of spontaneity, awkwardness and melancholy. The female form serves as the main protagonist in many of his works, along with themes of intimacy and domesticity. His works always start with the composition, like a jigsaw puzzle. Parra sketches fast in pen and paper, then onto an iPad, before painting onto canvas. The palette is strictly flat pinks, reds, blues and blacks. With their contrasting colours, his bright graphic works recall Neo-Pop artists like Gary Hume and Katharina Fritsch.

In his work, Parra reflects on life and relationships. Each title reveals the character's true state of mind – can't look at your face anymore (2016) love lost (2016) or thrown away like your stupid ball (2019). Interestingly, the titles aren't capitalised – instead, they’re lowercase, as if taken directly from a conversation with a partner. The words are vulnerable and at odds with the strong visuals – a sign that, no matter how desirable and present either partner is, no one can escape the troubles of love.