An ArtBelle always has a treat for you. You know, the kind that doesn’t give you cavities. I found Christine Marek-Matejka on my new love–Twitter. In addition to being a mixed media visual artist, Marek-Matejka is the lead singer/songwriter for black-eyed SUZIE.
Today we’ll focus on Marek-Matejka’s art, but don’t fret. We are going to girant you access to the tunes (at a later date). Marek-Matejka lives in the Swan River Valley in Manitoba, Canada where she focuses on both her art and music. Plus, she stalks ArtBLT! Read on for the interview.
- Do you have any formal training in mixed media?
I did four years of post-secondary study in Visual Art including painting, drawing and art history at the Universities of Manitoba, Brandon and Saskatchewan. I did not take a mixed media class, but my painting and drawing instructors emphasized an unconventional approach to the media I was exploring. I was encouraged to draw and paint on and incorporate a variety of mixed media into my projects; these things included cloth, wood, metal, glass, string, and anything of relevance contextually.
My first painting instructor was adamant that we push the boundaries of what we knew and were taught about the typical conventions surrounding artistic fields. The more unconventional our approach the better the grade we got. I didn’t particularly like that at first, which led to some lively quarrels and the odd stand-off in my professor’s back office.
I did learn to accept, appreciate, and actually adopt that mindset, which I think is evidenced in my work. I’m grateful to have had the experience of pushing boundaries as it got me to develop an original style.
I still get a lot of questions about my process and it still feels fresh and fun, which is vital to continuing in a visually artistic vein!
- What is it that you want to impress others with your artwork?
When I begin a new project, I think how I can take people to a place or perspective they have never realized. Even if the images are rather mundane or usual, such as a field of flowers, I think it is more interesting and effective if those images could serve as a window into our lives, or perhaps as an extension of the life we know.
I want people to feel as though they are walking into a sacred and private place or into unchartered territory, even if that message is understated. If you take some time to really look, you will often see that my images are more than what they appear at first glance. For example, you may see a girl swinging on a swing, which is a simple childhood activity. But look deeper and you may see and feel the tension in her body which is set against a rather ominous background, and it is no accident on my part!
I believe that a good piece of art will take a viewer somewhere, either into a shared collective experience or perhaps an individual one. It’s a great feeling when someone stands in front of a piece of my artwork and they get lost in it–even for a brief moment! When that happens or they return over and over to examine the piece more, then I feel I’ve succeeded as an artist.
End of Interview
As you can tell, Christine has a unique stamp on art. If she didn’t, the ArtBelles wouldn’t have brought her to you. Thanks to the lovely Christine for interviewing with the ArtBelles. Please check out her website to view more of her work. You can listen to her music here.