Anton Psak is in his second year as a Fellow with Digswell Arts at The Farmhouse, Stevenage.
1) How would you describe your current practice (e.g. materials, techniques, themes, key questions, approach)?
I am an oil painter, and I use a combination of wet on wet and glazing techniques on canvas. The theme that I work with most of the time is a resemblance of memories reflecting concept coined by Jung as the collective unconscious.
2) What are you working on at the moment (forthcoming exhibitions, events, workshops, etc.)?
For a while, I have been focusing on the body of work suitable for a solo exhibition. Nevertheless, there are always some spontaneous opportunities where I can show my work as part of a group effort.
3) What are your plans for the coming year?
I do not have any plans, reflecting on current changes in politics I may leave the country soon and seek a new start somewhere else.
4) What is the question you get asked most about your work and how do you answer it?
For some reason, I have experienced different types of approaches when people talk to me about my practice. One is a genuine interest and curiosity about the painting. The second is basically lecturing me on what I could do better and how diluted my “judgments” are.
In the first case, I get asked most of the time how I painted the project and where the idea came from, and the answer varies from painting to painting.
In the second case, there is not a real question and answer to it. I think it is a more cultural thing than anything else.
5) What or who inspired you to be an artist and why?
It was a documentary movie about Howard Hodgkin that made me think that painting could be something I can imagine doing. Plus, the support from my friends already established in art made me who I am today.
6) Which artist do you most admire and why?
I never had this tendency to look at a particular period of art or individual artist. For me, it is more about individual artworks from more than one artist and a definite period of time.
7) How has your relationship with Digswell Arts strengthened your practice as an artist?
The Trust offered me psychological and physical much-needed space at the time, and that kept me going as an artist. Without this, I would have to pause my practice and look for alternatives, and that would delay my personal progress.
As in any organization, there are ups and downs, but the spirit of the art community helped me to stay engaged with my work.