Art, // July 5, 2015
Albin Talik — ARTIST
Interview with artist Albin Talik —
1. Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Albin Talik. I was born in 1980 in Poland. I live and work in Cracow. For years, the main area of my work was the music. I played rock music and I wanted to be a rock star. That was my dream. Unfortunately, for many reasons it did not work out. But I still have a home recording studio and I produce music for various projects (games, theater performances, animations). I also create illustrations for animated videos. At the age of 30 I decided to try my luck at visual arts, and began searching for my place in the field. Note, that I had never picked up a pencil or tried to draw. It came just like that. My girlfriend talked me into painting lessons and suggested the idea of making collages.
The technique that I use is called: paper painting. This is something based on a collage. I’m trying to get the effect of oil painting with irregular brushstrokes. My works are made up of thousands of pieces of paper. Completion of such an image takes me between one week and one month depending on the degree of complexity. The format is 70 X 100 cm and everything is covered with a large amount of glue.
In my work I use mostly newspapers and albums. Sometimes I buy a newspaper only for one page.
2. Why art?
It seems to me that in my musical career I came to a point where I did not know in which direction to go. The idea to begin a completely new way of life seemed crazy. Artists who started their painting adventure in their thirties or forties were my guides. I’m talking here about Paul Gauguin, Henri Rousseau, Władyslaw Ślewiński, who made me realize that it’s never too late. I think I’m doing this for many reasons. Firstly, this is some inner need, some kind of positive pressure that drives you. Secondly, there are some stories, emotions, vibration that you feel you must pass on, spit out. And thirdly, it is just a hobby, something that makes me happy. For me personally, art has become a place where I have completely settled in. I met wonderful people, teachers and friends.
3. What is your earliest memory of wanting to be an artist?
As a kid, I went to a music school, so you can say that since childhood I have been connected to art. Later I remember that I always carried some art album in my backpack. Marc Chagall, Vincent van Gogh, Francisco Goya, Pieter Bruegel the Elder… I studied their works but only an emotional background. I never thought that in the future I would start to deal with painting myself.
4. What are your favorite subject and media ?
People. Human nature. I would say. Obviously this is a very broad topic. I share my pictures on different cycles. I started with portraits of friends and family. I’m currently working on a series called: Rumination. Rumination is similar to worry except it focuses on bad feelings and experiences from the past. I try to show a man struggling with their weaknesses, loneliness, alcohol, stimulants, the man who meditates on the meaning of existence. The heroes of my paintings often wear masks. They are a symbol of thought, passing through life. In my work I try to encourage the viewer to think about what is really important in life.
My other big series of works is called Pyramids. The heroes of these paintings are grasp in the ordinary moments of life. We have a potter, librarian, seller, traveler, painter … The basic element of these paintings are pyramid head. White and black. In each of us there are good emotions and bad emotions, good and evil. I try to show that we are all somewhat alike. We are all humans. It depends on us what we do with our lives. What path we choose. When I was studying painting, my teacher forbade me to use black and white paint. This series is my rebound on those prohibitions. People often ask me why the characters in my paintings do not have heads or wear masks or pyramids. I like when art forces you to think, ask questions or thoughts.Of course, this is my point of view. I do not want to impose an image viewer reception. Each image carries a slightly different message. Sometimes the most important thing is the atmosphere.
5.How do you work and approach your subject?
At the beginning it was very difficult and hugely time consuming. In time, I came to practice. For me the most important thing is discipline. I work every day. No exceptions. I think this is the key to success. For many people my paintings at first glance are made with oil paints. This is because I use paper only as a color. I do not use fragments of inscriptions and this gives the impression oil painting picture.At the beginning there is always drawing and then get down to the background. I devote a lot of attention to the background. I cut the paper into small pieces. The shape is also very important. Each painting I start from the background. I try to make the perfect color transition from dark to light. The bulb is a frequent hero of my paintings and sort of trademark. Skilful tonal transition is probably my favorite part of the “painting”.
6. What are your favorite art works , artists?
My favorite contemporary painter is Robert Bubel. I love Polish painters. Leon Wyczółkowski, Władysław Ślewiński, Wojciech Weiss, Przerwa Tetmajer … the period “Young Poland” was amazing. I really like Moïse Kisling, Paul Gauguin, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner … I also love biographies of painters, and I read a lot of them. I highly recommend “Depths of Glory” by Irving Stone based on the life of Camille Pissarro. I can not point my favorite picture. Maybe “Woman with a Coffeepot” by Paul Cézanne. Seeing this in person, this picture simply explodes with color. I also like the sculpture of Tomasz Górnicki, an amazing man. Probably the most hard-working artist I’ve ever met. I recommend everyone get acquainted with his work. Piotr “Deadi” Dedel is also an artist, which I really appreciate. He deals mainly with tattoos. Some of his works are simply killer…
7. What are the best responses you have had to your work?
Perhaps the best situation was when my sister in law, who lives above me and see how I work every day, seeing the finished picture, approached, touched and asked: “But here you are using a paint?” My friend Artur Trojanowski and his wife Jola were the first people who invited me to participate in a group exhibition, which was the turning point in my career. Until today, I had 7 exhibitions which to me is a huge success.
8. What do you like about your work?
Everything. Development. Overcoming barriers. It’s still something new, otherwise it helps me in disposing of emotions. I need this and I love it. I think it is mine. I am a workaholic and I love my addiction. I can not help it. In my work I like the most process of image formation. When the image is finished I start the next one. Immediately. So this is what happens.
9. What advice would you give it other artists?
Follow your heart. Keep going. Believe in yourself. It is important to draw inspiration from other artists. Do not worry that someone is better than us. Concentrate on yourself and work, work, work. Be patient. Nothing comes right away. If you put your true feelings, then people will see it and sooner or later will appreciate.
10. Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?
Good question. I think I’d like to keep on doing what I’m doing.But who knows?