Where Art, Design, and Adventure Collide!
Hello, I'm Diana Garreau, and I'm excited to take you on a journey through my artistic world. My life has been an incredible fusion of cultures, travel, and creative pursuits. I grew up gaining a European perspective from my parents, my father was born in India but grew up in a French household and my mother was born in England and in her late teens went to live in Paris. I was born in Madagascar and for the first 30 years lived in Kenya, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Australia, and Europe. In Africa, I was so fortunate to be able to explore the breathtaking landscapes and experience the vibrant colors and bold art of these different regions. My parent's aesthetics in the home were more European, I learned about famous artists, Victorian jewelry, and furniture and loved the amazing details of it all. I lived happily in two worlds, and I believe my art transverses between both, I feel very fortunate to witness the beauty and diversity that this world has to offer.
A Creative Path Unfolded
Despite my dad's best efforts to steer me towards a conventional career like medicine or law, my heart always belonged to art. I followed my passion and pursued graphic design in South Africa, immersing myself in the world of creativity. I soon found myself working in advertising, where I honed my skills and gained valuable experience.
I shifted gears a little to be in a more artistic environment and worked at a textile manufacturing company where I enjoyed the freedom of designing on a large scale and designing for new trends. At 25 I decided to go freelance and started a very small design studio. It was a leap of faith, but one that would shape the course of my career.
Riding the Wave of Textile Design
The ocean has always held a special place in my heart, and it became a significant source of inspiration for me. I started developing prints for emerging labels in the booming South African surf industry during the electrifying 1980s. These prints brought a fresh and exciting vibe to surfwear, and skate and spilled into fashion.
As the waves of success carried me forward, I found myself relocating to Southern California, where I established my second textile design studio. Over the years it grew organically adding more designers and sales teams, my journey didn't stop there I decided to spread my wings and attend major textile shows across the globe, from the chic streets of Paris to the bustling markets of New York and the creative haven of Brazil. I opened a sister studio in Buenos Aires for nearly 12 years I traveled down every 5 weeks to work on new collections. I felt like I was living 2 lives again soaking up the beautiful Spanish history and art with its own spin and hectic street bustle then back to Laguna Beach with its chill, close artistic, and beach community.
These experiences allowed me to expand into different realms, creating prints not only for surf and activewear but also for high-end couture and fashion. The possibilities were endless, and I reveled in the challenge of designing prints that would set trends, pulling from cultures, overlapping them, and reinventing past decades of fashion, my favorite time in this process was finding new color and element combinations.
Embracing Freedom in Fabric
What captivated me most about textile design was the freedom it offered. How textures and color can set a mood, what defines a good print and what could I do to help make a brand stand out. This fueled my passion for pushing the boundaries of design.
With each new collection, I embraced the excitement of innovation, always striving to introduce fresh prints and unconventional ideas. It was a journey of constant exploration, I reveled in the process of bringing my artistic visions to life.
From Fashion to Home: A Creative Evolution
As the years passed, my creative journey took yet another exciting turn and a hobby became mainstream. I decided to channel my 30 years of textile expertise into the interior decor world, mainly wallpaper and pillows. The fashion world had been fast-paced and ever-changing, but I craved something more enduring and classic. Transforming spaces and making them more inviting and aesthetically pleasing became my new passion. Whether it was a commercial establishment or a residential home, the process of sculpting the perfect ambiance, and bringing many objects, patterns, and textures together was very satisfying, and I had decades of art in the archives that I could use or show as an idea springboard from.
Designing jewelry had become a personal escape for me in the textile days and I often did it at night. It allowed me to slow down, focus on intricate details, and create small collections that carried a piece of my soul. Working with stones, shaping them, and setting them was like a timeless dance between the past and the future. Friends would buy my pieces and with this encouragement I turned my hobby to work hand in hand with my interiors, pushing for longevity in design but still fresh to the eye.
Collaborating and Creating Dreams
Collaboration has been an essential part of my creative journey. Working with clients and interior designers allowed me to bring their visions to life while injecting a touch of the unexplored. It's a wonderful feeling to see a space transformed by the power of design.
I'm deeply grateful to the incredible clients and friends who have embraced my designs, inviting them into their businesses and sanctuaries. Knowing that my art resonates with others and becomes a part of their lives is an immensely fulfilling experience.
Nurturing Creativity: A Full Circle
Throughout my career, I've always believed in giving back. Sharing the knowledge I've gained and supporting young designers as they embark on their own creative journeys has been a full-circle moment for me. Watching them grow and flourish is a source of endless joy.
In my pursuit of art and design, I've discovered that creativity knows no boundaries. It transcends cultures, languages, and borders. My mission is to open people's hearts to appreciate artisans worldwide and to cherish the beauty and uniqueness that each creative expression brings.
So, welcome to DianaGarreau.com, where art, design, and adventure collide! Join me on this exciting journey as we explore the wonders of creativity, celebrate cultural diversity, and create a world filled with art that knows no limits.