Little Rock–based Argentinian artist Maximiliano Dominguez uses his platform La Rosa Collective to raise awareness about fast fashion, community outreach and human enlightenment.
WORDS / YANI KO
PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE ARTIST
Born in Salta, Argentina, and currently residing in Little Rock, Maximiliano Dominguez, 27, did not let the pandemic halt his creative efforts in the fashion world. Under the umbrella of La Rosa Collective, Dominguez operates a screen-printing business, the global fashion label RAIZ and a curated second-hand clothing brand, La Rosa Antigua, which launched in October of 2020.
La Rosa Antigua features collectible, hand-selected vintage clothing and was born from Dominguez’s mission to spread awareness of the negative impact of fast fashion and modern consumerism. The brand can be found on his Instagram or website.
“La Rosa Collective has become a community and creative platform of compassion and purpose,” Dominguez said. “Our mission is to bridge communities and support artists, makers, and dreamers through various resources, services, programming and projects.”
Dominguez worked on community outreach through La Rosa Collective in association with the Black Lives Matter movement and said this was a highlight of his career.
“I reached out to various artists across the state of Arkansas to team up and establish some fundraising to donate to grassroots organizations across the state,” he said.
The label RAIZ, which translates from Spanish as “root” or “origin” and launched in 2013, specializes in graphic T-shirts and hoodies influenced by Dominguez’s Latinx culture, skateboarding, photography and underground music. Dominguez taught himself various skills through the brand such as sewing, screen printing, graphic design, marketing, and branding.
“And most of all,” he said, “community compassion.”
RAIZ’s most iconic collections heavily feature el ojo (the eye) and rose designs. Dominguez says el ojo symbolizes RAIZ’s “open your mind” mantra and represents universal enlightenment and truth. The rose design represents humanism, with the rose being “one of the most beautiful, delicate and painful flowers on this earth.”
“Our human journey,” he said, “is an effort to bloom into our most genuine self.”
As for the future of La Rosa Collective, Dominguez hopes to recreate, in new locations, his first art installation, “Rose Garden,” which took place at 360 Studio in 2018 and included 500 live roses, barbed wire, chain link fence and native Arkansas greenery.
“Our goal was to emulate the “The Beauty of Life to Death” by using real roses that would decay and drop leaves across the gallery throughout the weekend,” Dominguez said. The three-day installation coincided with the release of his 2018 spring/summer collection for RAIZ.
Dominguez is currently developing frameworks that will allow him to collaborate and co-work with various communities through initiatives and calls-to-action in an effort to advocate for change and social development.
“Whether it’s entrepreneurial, creative, educational, personal or social, our true compassion is rooted in the belief of a prospering collective existence.”
IG // @LAROSA.MAXIMILIANO