“I <3 art + design,” reads Romi Myers’ artist statement. “Plain and simple.”
Romi’s digital shorthand is key to understanding the Florida-based artist’s aesthetic. Rendered in vibrant Crayola colors and often hiding letters and numbers—Romi has synesthesia, a neurological condition that blends the senses—her digital prints put a contemporary spin on the now-classic emoji.
A self-taught digital artist with a background in interior and industrial design, Romi operates under the name mundo_da_romi, Portuguese for “Romi’s world.” “The name is inspired by where I come from, and how I interpret my world as a visual artist + designer,” she says. Born in Brazil, Romi channels her Japanese-Italian-American background into each colorful print, incorporating Kawaii elements from Japan, tongue-in-cheek pluck from Italian culture, and bright colors from Brazil.
Calling her communication struggles in the US a “lost in translation” moment, Romi’s work is a visual bridge to her American citizenship—she adapts to the language and culture barriers by creating emoji-like characters called “emojions.” Made instantly familiar by their googly eyes and canary yellow color, her emojions experience crippling corporate burnout, overwhelm, and media-induced information overload—just like us.
“Outnumbered,” one of Romi’s earliest designs, addresses the artist’s creative unraveling at the hands of corporate America: “Somewhat therapeutic, this was my means of expressing how I felt about being an extremely creative person confined within a prescribed corporate culture, and how the passage of time led to burn out,” she tells NOT REAL ART.
Though Romi’s work highlights dissolving boundaries between real and digital worlds, the artist keeps things lighthearted, poking fun at the endless inconveniences of being human. As Romi says, being human is “the most perfect imperfection in existence.”
“I <3 art + design. Plain and simple.” — Romi Myers
All photos published with permission of the artist.
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