Communicating IRL with Art Baby Girl’s Grace Miceli

Meet the artist behind our "Lost Socks" social illustration and hear her thoughts on the complicated relationship between social media and art.

Grace Miceli is a New York City-based freelance artist who cultivates a dreamland of elegant marker illustrations under the alias: Art Baby Girl.

Back when everybody used Tumblr, Grace was a pioneer in online gallery curation, starting “Art Baby Gallery” as an online space for femme artists like Signe Pierce, Petra Collins, and Arvida Bystrom. Now, after growing her name and brand, she’s putting all of her energy into her art and bringing it out into the world, both online and on walls.

Gently poking fun at our addiction towards consumerism, pop culture, and mental health, Grace reinterprets brands like Corn Flakes and Pepperidge Farm as one would receive a merit in elementary school, but through the lens of existential dread.

“Basically I’m making art about what I’m talking about in therapy,” she laughs. “I want to encourage vulnerability and messiness. Maybe by talking about my baggage it will help my audience to feel less shame about theirs.”

Illustration by @artbabygirl for National Sock Day.

There is something to say about the ills of social media; it can isolate us, or bring forth and perpetuate a sense of longing for a life that isn’t our own. Instagram clearly perpetuates this, but – perhaps paradoxically – it also serves as a platform for artists to talk about these very feelings.

Grace says, “Instagram is this extension of ourselves and our work, for better or worse. It’s how we communicate and share what we are creating.“

Grace’s illustrations bring meaning to this world, and her work is a breath of fresh air to those who constantly scroll for validation.

While the internet has been such a driving force in reaching her large following, Grace is determined for her work to have a life outside the internet. She has worked with larger brands, like Nike and Coach, to achieve this. Grace says, “(The Internet) connected me with people who had similar interests and desires when I really needed to feel less alone IRL. It’s given me a way to reach so many people…I’m not sure I would have a career without it. I’m currently figuring out how to be online and not obsessively look to social media for validation. It has its dark side, too.”

Grace prints zines and clothing out of her illustrations, which you can purchase at her online shop…HERE!