I'm Rachel Grantham, founder & illustrator of Aesthete studio. I started Aesthete studio in Athens, Georgia because of a love of art history & design and the desire to add beauty to the world.
Everything at Aesthete studio is born and made in the south - myself included. Born in Marietta, Georgia, I graduated from the University of Georgia with degrees in Art History and P.R. My P.R. degree was to ensure I could get a job, but ironically art history is what's kept me employed. It is what inspired my company and drew me to illustration (pardon the pun).
Moment of Inspiration
I love art history. Yet when I looked at popular illustration, there seemed to be a lack of connection between it and the history of art. To me, this was a major missed opportunity! People like pretty things. But I want to create illustrations and products that go beyond pretty. I still want to make beautiful art but root it in the past - in other great art.
Why the Context of Art Matters
I believe that beauty can be appreciated without context, but at Aesthete Studio, my aim is to take your enjoyment to the next level. I hope you love my art prints at first sight! But I think knowing some background about the art print makes it SO much better.
Take my bohemian ladies portraits for example. They are inspired by popular portraits of stylish, avant garde ladies in the 1920's, by artists like Matisse and Klimt. Art of this period was transforming and heavily influenced by WWI, impressionism, and cubism. Out of these influences came the portraits which inspired my work and continue to inspire many other artists today.
If you’re in a museum or scouring new art online, you may notice female portraits done in bright, almost too bright colors, referencing Matisse’s fauvist style, which projects vibrant emotion and feeling through color. You may see Japanese prints, dress or oriental vases, referring the influence of eastern art and culture in the early 20th century. Or maybe there’s is a flattening or skewing of the perspective, showing the influence of the cubist movement, which challenged the single viewpoint perspective represented in academic art. Realizing all those connections about a work of art, makes it come alive! You know more about what Matisse and Klimt were thinking and how the heck they came up with these famous works that you see everywhere. So great, right?!
Great Art Inspires More Great Art
Knowing a little bit about painting, can tell you a lot about other paintings. You’ll find that artists of the same period are speaking in the same language, using similar styles and images. You’ll even see that carry through into different movements, but given a new spin thanks to a new generation’s perspective. In that way, I hope you'll find that little knowledge of art can translate to a lot of aha moments - connecting one artist's work with another’s.
At Aesthete studio, I am creating paper goods for your home. Hopefully, I will create some aha moments for you too + a deeper enjoyment of my art and the great art that's inspired it!