Luis Da Cruz is an international multi-media visual artist and designer. Born in Covilhã, Portugal, Da Cruz moved to Rennes, France with family in his teens. In the early 1990s Da Cruz relocated to New York City, where he now lives and works.
While in France, Da Cruz received professional training in Design and Architecture first in Brittany, on France’s western coast, and later in Paris. Early in his career Da Cruz was hired by the renowned French fashion designer, Pierre Cardin with whom he worked for seven years. During his time with Cardin, Da Cruz helped to gut, rebuild, renovate and decorate hotels, restaurants, showrooms, and private residences across France, and worked on special projects in Belgium and Mainland China.
Da Cruz’s body of work is heavily influenced by his love of travel and the exotic destinations he has visited. His many visits to the Asian continent inspired Da Cruz to begin working with iron, a material that had always fascinated him. Iron now has a strong presence in his body of work and is used in conjunction with a variety of unexpected materials. Da Cruz creates furniture, lamps and home accessories, and installations mixing iron with contrasting materials such as wood, bamboo, fabric, porcelain, glass and even leaves. His exploration of the organic and inorganic, and the construction of visually engaging and tactile installations have become a trademark of Da Cruz’s oeuvre.
Finding inspiration everywhere and seeing potential in anything, Da Cruz unearths creative possibilities others might overlook. He often transforms ordinary objects, such as a simple waste basket into an unusual lampshade, or gives a discarded mattress a new life as an armchair by repurposing its internal springs. Da Cruz also designs his own fabrics, mixing raw burlap with refined linens, colored glass, beads, and other materials.
Da Cruz’s work has been exhibited internationally in group and solo shows. He is currently setting up the second iteration of his salon-style home gallery in Harlem, Musee Maison. Through Musee Maison, Da Cruz plans to create an alternative exhibition space that makes contemporary art accessible to the neighborhood.
A brilliant wizard of modern installation and design, Da Cruz is an artist to keep a close eye on.
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Like my life, my art defies strict labels. Simply put, I am a visual artist and designer born in Portugal, educated in France, based in New York City, and always on the move. I work with materials ranging from the common such as iron, canvas, and porcelain, to the unexpected such as coffee filters, NYC trash cans, elevator cables, and discarded mattresses. Everything is fodder for thought and expression, and anything can be a material. The discarded, the mundane, and the elegant are all equal in potential. By using these ideas as a guiding principle, I create objects that transcend categorization. Through a juxtaposition of aesthetics, materials, and the deliberate blurring of boundaries, my work explores the harmony between the organic and inorganic and the inherent potential for transformation in any object. Throughout my career I have created site-specific installations for international clients, furniture and design objects for retail, and paintings and sculptures for exhibitions. I find inspiration everywhere, and as such I am always working and continually creating.