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Summer Fridays: Freelance Creator and Co-Founder Maria Gotay

This week we feature Maria Gotay 🔥 freelance creative and Art Island’s co-founder. She keeps her time stacked with creative endeavors from branding and design to DJ gigs and herbalism side hustles. She also keeps the train on the track for Art Islands 75+ contributors and team members as the org’s director.

Swipe to read more about Maria (@kaleidoscopa) and how she’s staying busy this summer.

Our team is unique ~ because we bring together many facets of the Austin arts scene to form something fully collaborative. When they’re not creating alongside Art Island, it’s no surprise that our team are thought leaders in their own industries! 🌟

Our Summer Fridays series puts a spotlight on our core team members and what they do when they’re “off” from Art Island events and “on” in their personal life. Tune in every week for a local profile and a day-long stories takeover! 🌴Interview follows as text:

What do you do at art island?

Wear the captain hat! Kidding but not. As a founder I’ve been the main producer and organizer since our start in 2019. That used to mean mostly making art projects with other creatives but these days I’m more likely directing + producing events, preparing budgets and project managing, talking to potential clients + collaborators!

Favorite memory at an art island event?

I’ve met so many of my very best friends at Art Island events! A moment that will always live in my heart is when I DJed for the first time at one of our large events directly after Ryan (aka Feed The Light), my co-founder who inspired me to learn to DJ (and taught me!). Art Island is all about lifting others up and sharing talent and vision, and it’s allowed me to try so many new things creatively.

What’s keeping you busy work-wise this summer?

Everything. As a freelance creative I’m always hustling! I mainly do branding and graphic design for all sorts of clients (recently, check out @WineRackSoundtrack). I also completed a @brunchwork business bootcamp earlier this summer and am currently working on a new business concept. But trust that Art Island also keeps me busy (and inspired) as well!

What are your creative goals for the season?

Directing and building art installations has been extremely fulfilling work, and our team hopes to do much more of it in the coming months. Personally, my alterego @tizane__ wants to get out and DJ around town more.

What’s your ideal Friday night in Austin look like?

It starts with dinner and drinks at Kemuri Tatsuya-- oooomg their nigori sake and takoyaki! Then bike over to Hotel Vegas and hopefully catch a touring band- I love African and psychedelic music- then Outer Heaven to close out the night dancing!

What community do you admire and we should scope out in Austin?

It’s been such a joy to meet so many creative and collaborative communities in Austin and difficult to pick just one! But I always love Exploded Drawing (@xplodeddrawing)- which fuses experimental electronic music and insanely drippy visuals. Their pop ups at Austin School of Film have been some of my favorites, and I’ve tuned in to their virtual casts as well. Would love to collaborate at some point.

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