Jan 21, 2016 1:08PM

Inside @artbabygirl's IRL Teenage Daydream

At Alt Space, NYC.

Curator and creator Grace Miceli aka @artbabygirl opened her third show, The Daydreamers, at New York DIY gallery Alt Space on Friday evening — a photo and art exhibition that explores the innocence and beauty of youth and childhood. Grace is the artist and illustrator behind online visual space Art Baby Gallery, who previously curated Girls At Night On the Internet, featuring Petra Collins and Arvida Bystrom exploring the female psyche in its most surreal form.

Sponsored by Kawaii fashion and art fusion label JumpFromPaper, The Daydreamers guests were given super-cute gift bags at the door, filled with teen-essentials like pins, stickers and candy. The venue was filled with pink balloons, poppy art and striking photographs from Tyler Mitchell, 17-year-old Daisy Sanchez, Lula Hyers, Remi Riordan and Terrell Davis. Phrases like, "Let's fall in love out of mutual understanding" and dreamy pastel photos covered the walls, transforming the space into a hazy teenage dream.

We caught up with Grace to chat about creating these vibes and how she got into curation. 

Ava Nirui: How did you get into art/curation?
Grace Miceli: I've been wanting to make things for as long as I can remember. I started curating when I was studying at Goldsmiths in London. I had just turned 21, and working directly with art that could exist outside of the classroom suddenly became this really exciting possibility. So I curated a few shows there with friends and I've been doing it ever since, both online and IRL, throughout several cities.

How did you select the artists/photographers to showcase for The Daydreamers?
The brand that sponsored the exhibition approached me about putting on a show featuring specifically young artists as a way to promote supporting up-and-coming artists, which is already common to my practice but it was great to have it be the focus. The exhibiting artists all came to mind immediately — I find them each to have such a directed and developed voice, which is amazing due to their age.

How do you feel you are giving young creatives an outlet to display their work through Alt Space and Art Baby Gallery, and why is this so important?
I think it's important to foster a community where creativity is valued and encouraged — it can act as a positive outlet for so many. The artists that I'm working with are part of a generation that is especially interested in sharing their truths and stories, which are often from points of view that have traditionally been excluded from the contemporary art canon, so we've decided to change that ourselves.

Text: Ava Nirui 
Photography: Mark Otto