Gina Guasch on founding a more inclusive studio, with an “ethical and feminist vision of the world”
The Barcelona-based graphic designer decided to launch GGT after realising the lack of visibility in design for women and the queer community.
- Ayla Angelos
- 4 August 2021
While Gina Guasch was growing up, she was constantly surrounded by creativity. Her parents, for one, are both artistic, and her brother is a philosopher, so this eventually led Gina onto her own path of inquisition and craft. “Since a young age, I’ve been surrounded by art and thinking,” she says, having attended biennials and artistic residencies with her family on regular occasions. “This has given me a more critical and sensitive look at the world.” But not only did this upbringing enliven her analytical sensibility, it also inspired her to study graphic design and later go on to deconstruct the typical concepts of the medium – especially those that she was taught in school.
So you could refer to Gina as someone of a rebellious nature. That’s not to say she hasn’t studied hard to get where she is today, and she’s gone on to work at several design studios before founding her own. Yet by having such a firm grasp on the industry, Gina’s then been able to throw her own spin on it, quite literally, and this is all with special thanks to her creative family and friends that she admires, all of whom have “great personalities and critical thinking”. It’s these very relationships that have influenced countless projects of hers, including Maricas, an LGBTQIA+ queer collective and party; TKM, an ever-changing and self-managed space of emerging art; and GGT, Gina’s own creative studio. “Right now,” she adds, “I am working and living in Raval, Barcelona, while I amuse myself with drawing in my free time, creating fantasy imagery that’s both colourful and iconographic.”
It’s not unusual for a designer to eventually go out on their own path and launch their own studio, especially if you’re of a similar unruly nature to Gina – and all for the right reasons too. While studying, she realised the lack of visibility for women designers and studios led by women, “but paradoxically 90 per cent of the students were women,” she shares. This, of course, sparked many curiosities for Gina, and after noticing how much of the workforce was dominated by men, she simply had to do something about it. “With all of this in mind, I wanted to make my contribution to the sector and create a far more inclusive studio, with members from the queer community and a more ethical and feminist vision of the world.” And that’s exactly where GGT was borne: a small and multidisciplinary team that comprises women and non-binary folk from the LGBTQIA+ community.
The people at the heart of the GGT team are Gina, Clara, Eloísa, Miguel and Martí, and between them, they span Barcelona, Madrid and Copenhagen, and bring a variety of skills to the table in design, fine art, marketing and communication. As for the projects they like to onboard, these tend to take shape within the realms of gender perspective, those “that are underground and emerging” as well as the projects that are sat within the cultural sectors, like art, design and music. “We believe that design can be an activist tool in which we are able to express ourselves,” she adds, “we like to create and be able to move the spectator. That’s why we especially like to develop projects such as branding, identity and digital content, and we are passionate about making flyers and covers.”
Now having heard a little more about the studio, you won’t be surprised to hear that the team prefer to work in an analogue and experimental way; everything they create is a purposeful challenge. Scanners, print machines, papers, handmade drawings, phone cameras – whatever it is, they’ll work it into a project some how. Better yet if there are a “few mistakes”, as this only adds to the originality of the work. “We do not like to repeat aesthetic patterns,” adds Gina, “so each project is a new challenge in which we need to come up with new solutions and experimentations.”
This can be seen a medley of the studio’s recent endeavours, including Maricas, the queer techno party that was founded by Gina herself and two Latina partners, Isabella and Eloisa. Combining queer culture and electronic music, the team decided to generate new content for each party, all with a “common denominator” of a “rave aesthetic” – i.e. “disruptive speech but always with humour”. Indeed nodding to the aesthetic of punk and underground, the work itself is a reflection of Gina’s rebellious nature in work and life; to such lengths that the project’s typographies and punchy content has been banned on Instagram over 20 times for going against its guidelines.
There’s a lot more where that came from, too, such as the identity for design brand Viso Project in New York, or a rebrand for music festival All Eyes On Hip Hop. Regardless of the brief at hand, the most important factor is that it has to inspire the team, and “from there we hope that our audience feels the same,” says Gina. But most of all, she hopes that the studio’s work will spark conversation, as well as for it to be more activist. “We seek for the audience to react with empathy or by being uncomfortable, which would be a great sign.”
GGT: Maricas Flyer (Copyright © GGT, 2021)
About the Author
Ayla is currently covering Jenny as It’s Nice That’s online editor. She has spent nearly a decade as a journalist, and covers a range of topics including photography, art and graphic design. Feel free to contact Ayla with any stories or new creative projects.