Julia Ibbini (Detail Shot) - Untitled Study
Julia Ibbini (Detail Shot) - Study No. for the Sublime Line

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

How do you describe your work?
It's a combination of design, craft and code underpinned by an almost maniacal obsession with pattern. The patterns I work with are (quite wide ranging) everything from electronic music, to ancient Islamic design, to topographical maps.

The works begin with large intricate digital drawings built up over numerous layers which are then translated into highly detailed laser cut works on paper.

I'm of Jordanian-British heritage and I've spent my life in the Middle East region, so much of my work reflects that complex multicultural experience and the search for a sense of identity.

What is most important to your process?
Keeping making the work. Every day.

I read a quote recently by David Shrigley about making art which resonated with me: 'if you don’t get it out, it’ll fester inside and damage you somehow.' I work (almost) all the time, even when it feels boring and uninspiring. Because otherwise I'm a nightmare to live with.

Which living person do you most admire?
There are so many and for so many different reasons; artists, musicians, authors, athletes, my dad, my brother, my daughter, the list goes on. Emotional strength, great talent and inner calm are characteristics that put people on the list.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?
I met this chap entirely by chance, a few years ago, through a mutual love of running. It turned out he was a software engineer and we ended up collaborating on a number of projects, much of which led my work to where it is today.

When he's not building software tools to further my work, he helps apply logic and a calming common sense to the artistic process - and other areas of life (which is often lacking on my part). We got married a few weeks ago and I feel pretty lucky to have found him.

Oh and tea. I cannot live without tea.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Not giving up on the art thing (which I nearly did at least a dozen times). It's a tough journey.

What is your most marked characteristic?

In your mind, what is the most important thing an artist can be doing today to advance their work?
Get really really good at marketing.

To view more of Ibbini's work, visit her website, Facebook or Instagram!