Monica Varela is a jewelry designer from the Dominican Republic. The daughter of Fernando Varela, the Uruguayan - Dominican abstract artist, has followed her passion for jewelry since a young age. Monica currently shows her collection in the luxury concept store Dreams On Air, founded by designers Alise Trautmanne from Narciss and Sai Kong from Faces - Yohji Yamamoto. In 2017 her collection has had publications in Harpers Bazaar India and Kazakhstan, Atlas, Jute, Her Voice, Vogue Mex, among others. She first started in New York working with Mia Hebib and Hye-Jun Park at Flying Solo NYC, a designer driven concept store. She graduated from SCAD - Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Georgia where she pursued a bachelors in jewelry with a double focus in accessories and anthropology.
Fascinated by the range of colors and flexibility of the material she started making jewelry out of the inside wires of electric cords at the age of 13. She believes design processes come from our surroundings, objects and emotions that are encountered everyday; these are what guide the techniques that will be used for every new idea. In her current work we see the use of microscopic fibers, a material that resembles velvet.
At the age of 15 she went to IED - Instituto Europeo di Design in Milano where she first immersed herself in the future of technology, 3D modeling. In the search of new techniques and materials throughout her life she developed a deep interest in 3D printing and animation. Today, in her work, we see how she has managed to implement 3D printed elements while staying true to traditional jewelry techniques.
Fascinated by the way we perceive our surroundings and the way language reflects in human relationships she often sees herself integrating these subtle forms of identity in works of art. Incorporating her Caribbean roots through color and organic shapes seen in nature.