About us

A rather Bohemian story – with cats!

Baba Studio was founded in 2002 by Ùkrainian/Irish husband and wife partnership Alex Ukolov and Karen Mahony.

Alex graduated as an illustrator and graphic designer from the Kharkov Academy in Ukraine and then ran his own agency in Sebastopol. Karen did her post-graduate training at the Royal College of Art in London and ran her own successful design agency in London  and Prague for many years.

The Prague studio began in a 15th century building in the old Mala Strana, surrounded by inspirational art and architecture. Baba Studio  complete with our cats, moved to Killarney, in Ireland, in 2016, though a small studio space in Prague is retained. When we moved, we also changed the name of the company to BabaBarock.

The studio continues to be well-known for extravagant, “Modern Baroque” visuals with a distinct twist of both humour and the bizarre and one of our best-loved series is, of course, The Bohemian Cats.

We work with a range of symbolism and story-telling. Our design (mostly textiles and tarot) is informed by light and dark fairy tales, Victoriana, Bohemian Gothic, Alice in Wonderland, Fantastic and Mythical Creatures and of course the bizarre and humorous world of anthropomorphic and dressed animals. Our Baroque Bohemian Cats’ Tarot has become a classic of the genre. 

Besides decks and books – published by Magic Realist Press – the studio now produces a growing number of uniquely designed textile products including accessories, small household items and clothing  – all with the distinct Baba Studio blend of lavish decoration, beautiful quality and a distinctly Bohemian attitude.

Our tarot decks include:

    • The Tarot of Prague

    • The Baroque Bohemian Cats’ Tarot

    • The Fantastic Menagerie Tarot (based on the work of J.J. Grandville)

    • The Bohemian Gothic Tarot

    • The Victorian Romantic Tarot

    • The Alice Tarot (based on both Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass)

    • The Mythical Creatures Tarot

Please do visit us on our BabaBarock Facebook page

Also on our Bohemian Cats Facebook page 

You can also see the studio and more about how we work – and  how our cats have  run our studio! –  in this programme about us made by Czech Television (sorry, it is in Czech!)

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Licensing, wholesale and collaborations

We collaborate on an increasing number of licensed products, both digital and physical. We also wholesale to shops all over the world. If you’re interested in buying wholesale or licensing any of our Bohemian Cats, Bohemian Gothic, Victorian Romantic, Alice or other images please contact us.

You can subscribe to our opt-in newsletter HERE. Always with news, updates and specials.

If you are a retailer and interested in buying from us at wholesale/trade prices please do contact us.