For those of you who have not heard of Arlington-born artist Sabrina Cabada, I am thrilled this week to put her on your radar. She is one of my favorites! Sabrina’s work largely consists of vividly colorful portraits of women who are equal parts glamorous, playful, and fierce. There is something so real and raw about the women she paints. They are the woman you want to be friends with; and Sabrina is that woman herself! I was lucky enough to meet with her recently at Mission Lofts, a new live/work apartment community in Falls Church. While there, Sabrina gave me a personal tour of her latest project – a series of larger than life-size murals on each floor and in the common areas of this first-of-its-kind building. While showing me around, Sabrina shared her ties to Arlington, her career path, and what inspires her.
Sabrina lives with her family in Westover, just two blocks from the home where she grew up. Talent and appreciation for art runs in her veins as her father is a renowned abstract impressionist and her mother ran the family art gallery in D.C. for decades. Growing up in such an artistic environment nurtured her skills early on – she was told as early as kindergarten that she had a gift. Sabrina held her first art show at the D.C. gallery when she was just 19 years old.
Sabrina’s early work consisted of abstract, small-scale pieces that often included faceless women with a muted palette. Over time, Sabrina began to incorporate more color into her pieces, and she started painting on a larger scale. She has continued with the theme of feminine imagery, but now the faces of the women she paints are clearly defined. Each woman has a spark, some “it-factor” that instantly attracts the eye and evokes emotion. Women of the 50s, 60s, and 70s have always inspired Sabrina the most and she captures them perfectly in her pieces. In addition to the portraits, Sabrina does gorgeous abstracts as well.
Sabrina has always been engaged in something creative, but there have been times when her creativity was not expressed through painting alone. For example, she has dabbled in design, jewelry making, sewing, and collage. She even started beloved Arlington gift boutique Covet on Wilson Boulevard ten years ago with friend, Autumn Clayton. (Sabrina no longer has an ownership stake in the shop, but you can find notecards with prints of her work there from time to time.) She has always been driven to create – a true artist!
Sabrina’s latest undertaking – the murals at Mission Lofts – blew my mind. First of all, how amazing is it that the owners of this building thought to commission the work of a talented local artist to delight its tenants? As you exit the elevator on each of the building’s nine floors, you are greeted by one of Sabrina’s vibrant, energetic floor-to-ceiling murals. You cannot help but smile when you see them. You can also see her Tropical Groovy mural in the lobby, as well as an oversized outdoor mural along Carlin Springs Road in front of the building. Next up for Sabrina, a second outdoor mural – her largest yet – that she is painting on the Mission Lofts 4-level parking structure. Take a look at each of Sabrina’s Mission Lofts murals on her Instagram page.
You can view Sabrina’s portfolio and order Sabrina’s creations through her website. She sells a selection of paintings, prints, note cards, and littles – miniature-sized mixed media portraits. And be sure to follow her on Instagram @sabrinacabada. I cannot wait until I can call a Sabrina Cabada original (or five) my own!
TTR Sotheby’s International Realty is regarded as one of the highest-performing real estate firms in the United States. With nine offices and over 450 sales associates across Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, our commitment to professional service, integrity, and community leadership allowed us to capture more than $3.17 Billion in closed sales in 2018, while also serving as one of Washington D.C.’s foremost leaders in corporate philanthropy.
TTR Sotheby’s International Realty
2300 Clarendon Blvd., Suite 200
Arlington, Virginia 22201