Inside the Studio

Joanna Mlącka

Favorite material to work with?
I paint mostly in oil to which I add pigments, sometimes mixing it with acrylic. I like good quality linen canvas.

What themes do you pursue?
I paint objects, which sometimes belong to the world of used, unwanted, neglected things or at others times they are meticulously arranged in a quite unexpected environment. Intuitively conveying people’s stories with objects, which surround us.

Where is your studio?
My studio is located in the countryside, away from the city. It’s a very quiet and peaceful place.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?
One of the professors told me once that “A painting should be like a door through which you can get to the inside.”

Prefer to work with music or in silence?
I like listening to music while I’m working. The kind of music depends on what I’m painting at the moment. I frequently listen to John Garbarek, Zbigniew Preisner, or Joe Henry .

What’s around the corner from your place?
There is a beautiful garden and an orchard around my studio. There are meadows and forests stretching to the horizon.

Favorite smell?
I like the linen canvas smell, the scent of books, and the smell of the air after the rain.

If you couldn’t be an artist, what would you do?
I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. It’s like the air I breathe.

Who are your favorite writers?
I don’t have a favorite writer. I like Milan Kundera, Etgar Keret, and Kurt Vonnegut.

Greatest achievement?
My greatest achievements are my paintings, the good ones…

Favorite contemporary artist?
Mark Rothko is an artist that I really appreciate; his art is very close to my heart.

A piece of art you love?
The  film “Wings of Desire” by Wim Wenders.

Use anything other than paint?
No, now it’s the only medium that I use, but I think it may change someday.

Oil or acrylic ?
Definitely oil. Its characteristic features give me more technical opportunities. I like intense and noble colour.

Representational or Surreal?
Surreal but simultaneously representational .

Photo references?
I usually use a camera in my work. It’s like a sketchbook which can quickly record the observed object. Photo allows me to maintain the original shape of those objects during the further process of creating the painting.

What do you wear while you paint?
I wear casual, comfortable clothing, something that I can wipe the brushes off on.

Painting Inside or Outside?
Inside. Only in my studio where nothing distracts me and I can focus on my work.