Fk chats to super talented Melbourne based artist Minka Svarcs!
How would you describe the style of your work?
Illustrative and hand made. I have a decisive baltic folk influence and use a retro colour palette. There’s block clour, fine lines and often a kooky creature investigating an architectural landscape.
What is your background and what lead you to where you are today?
I’ve always felt comfortable making some kind of mark on paper. The fact that I’ve continued is a mixture of a supportive environment and being too stubborn to stop doing what I love most. I’ve always been keen to soak up new stimuli. Graphic expression is a great way for me to evaluate and interpret things in and around me. I love travelling and for me my images are a little portal to a new dimension.
Who are you favourite artists? and what inspires your work?
Popping immediately to mind are; Amaia Arazola and Esther Mc Manus – both phenomenal illustrators.
In the past few years my creativity has been fuelled by being far from my comfort zone and investigating new worlds of intrigue. I’m also fascinated by the relationship of the intangible and tangible, light, architecture, creatures and my Latvian heritage.
What materials do you prefer to work with and which ones would you like to explore more?
I try to steer clear of the realm of the digital (I find a long sessions staring at the computer screen soul-sucking) – preferring to get my hands dirty. Day to day I’m sketching with my fountain pen on paper, but I work mainly with screen-printing. This medium allows me to use real paint to create a series of original prints. I’m also up for a play-date combining photo, video and illustration.
Describe your workspace and surroundings and what your creative process is.
I don’t have a consistent workspace due to my lively travel bug. A design is usually conceived somewhere outside of what I consider familiar. When something intrigues me I’ll copy it down in my sketch book. Returning to base I’ll mull it over through various stages of refinement then find a time and space big enough to lock myself away solo (cat has a greencard) to undertake the screen printing process and create an edition of prints.
What do you love most about being an artist, and what are some challenges?
What I love most is that I can focus all my energy on doing that which makes me and others around me happy. It’s a vicious circle of goodness.
A challenge is my forever skimpy savings account.
What has been your favourite project/collaboration to work on?
While living in Granada, Spain, I was asked to paint some murals on the walls of an apartment Together with befriended Nadja Zhukova (who is a wizard with moving image) we created a video project showcasing the city and project. It was great to have an opportunity to work large scale as day to day I generally refine myself to the dimensions of my sketch book. Murals give a parallel life to an architecture space and my drawings can literally be greater than life.
The 2 short clips ‘Pen left the page’ can be viewed here & here.
What aspirations do you have for the future, and where do you hope to see your work?
I hope to see my work illuminate someone’s faculty of wonder.
I hope for it to relay the pointlessly amazing nature of our world.