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Lorena Prain

The Madrid-based artist, with a thing for the beautiful and the dammed, talks to Dazed Digital about her present and upcoming projects

Lorena Prain could be easily labelled as "the Spanish illustrator of the moment" but to use that title would unfairly reduce her work to fashion's brevity. Her powerful universe is filled with charismatic and enigmatic characters who, both real and fictional, share a certain dose of teenage non-conformity. Mixing oneiric and pop elements in equal measure, her work contains an intriguing dose of mystery and a frankness that allows a generation to mirror themselves in the absent looks and defiant attitudes that Prain’s figures exude.

I'm more drawn to the feminine world than the masculine, it's easier for me to express myself through that language

Dazed Digital: When did you start painting and what made you realise it wasn't just a hobby?
Lorena Prain: 
I've always been drawing. Since I was a little child my teachers and people around me have tried to motivate me and teach me to be constant, that's been my pending signature. I couldn't understand their effort, since early on painting was something personal, it didn't make sense to share it until a few years ago when I decided to show my work on my website.

DD: You play with irony and trash culture, why?
Lorena Prain: Experiences condition my work. I was born in a small town, in a working class area, I'm living in decadent and unfair times and I'm close to a very hypocritical and pretentious society, so I'm not sure if 'irony' is the right word. I would say paradox. Anyway, I hate having to justify my work.

DD: Women are very present in your work, are they your main inspiration?
Lorena Prain: I'm more drawn to the feminine world than the masculine, it's easier for me to express myself through that language.

DD: What is the role of Madrid in your work?
Lorena Prain: Madrid is a city with beautiful spots; with a defeatist personality and sense of humour at the same time. It's very inspiring.

DD: Is there any project you would like to do and haven't had opportunity?
Lorena Prain:
 There are some personal projects on sculpture I would like to do but unfortunately I can't because of the money. Dirty money. I expect to save some this year so I can acomplish at least one of them. Also, I would like to show my work in a gallery but I'm not good at networking, I guess it’s time to get cracking.

DD: Upcoming projects?
Lorena Prain: 
I'm working on a series of oil paintings and small sculptures. Also, with my best friends I've created a collective named (

Text by Paula Robles