Southbank visual artist showcased at Festival @ Boyd

Southbank visual artist showcased at Festival @ Boyd
Brendan Rees

It was only a year ago when Spaniard Ainara Fantossi Guemberena established her new art business F.G Artworks, and she has been busy promoting and selling her art at various festivals, including in Southbank.

The part-time Southbank resident has been living in the area for two years, and she said she was ecstatic to participate as a stallholder as part of last month’s inaugural Festival @ Boyd on May 18.

She told Southbank News that the festival had provided her with a great opportunity to not only sell her artworks, but to connect with other residents from diverse cultural backgrounds, as well as other young artists like herself.

“I felt great joy when people stopped by to ask me about the process of making each artwork, and it amazed me how many people bought my art,” Ainara said.

“I sold more than expected – roughly around five pieces of artwork and a few paintings. That rounds up to around $100.”

Ainara said she created charcoal-based artworks using charcoal pencils and oil paint as her two main mediums, “but I do like to dabble in other media as well”.

Asked where she drew her inspiration, she said, “I like animals but also culturally based pieces as well, and I also draw inspiration from an Instagram artist called Mad Charcoal, because he blends his imagination with realism, for instance he uses human faces that are made to look like a tornado.”

Ainara, who was one of the many stallholders to have participated in the Southbank event, said she was excited to return to the next Festival @ Boyd on August 18 and reconnecting with the community.

As someone living with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), Ainara said her artistic approach had been driven by her own experience of wanting to inspire others to become the best versions of themselves.

“Because of my ASD, I was always bullied in primary school and that forced me to spend much of my time in the principal’s office,” Ainara, who came to Melbourne from Spain when she was aged four, said.

“One day I saw a boy drawing incredible artworks in the office – he didn’t care that I had ASD, and he willingly talked to me and taught me how to draw a T-rex.”


From that day that day forward, I would draw every day and when I went to high school, I became prouder of my ASD and even had the courage to sell my art in multiple festivals.


“Every time I hold a stall at a festival I use the logo of a dinosaur.”

Festival @ Boyd celebrates sustainability and multiculturalism and features recycled and upcycled items, homemade art, live music, cultural dances, food vendors, and activities for all ages.

‘Organised by the Active Southbank Community Association, the festival aims to promote a circular economy and community connections.

It’s funded by a grant from the City of Melbourne, with a third event to be held on November 17. •

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