By Arturo Garcia de las Heras
I usually attend all sort of art events, looking for good outstanding art and artists, and that´s exactly what happened last year during the Summer Parallax Art Fair. I met Kasia, showing her fresh, elegant illustrations, which immediately caught my eye.
Kasia is an amazing Illustrator based in London. After graduating from art school in Poland she moved to London to pursue her career in fashion industry working as print designer for high street brands. Today she works as an Illustrator creating detailed drawings both for businesses and private clients. In her work she mixes portraiture with conceptual illustration and use biro pens as her favorite medium.
Her work has been featured in magazines, on various blogs, sites and by brands like ASOS, New Look, ITV's TV shows, or Surfdome. Her work was exhibited at few art events so far including: The Biennale of Illustration and Graphic Art in Berlin, Parallax Art Fair in London and was presented in London's galleries including Camden Image Gallery, Piano Room Hackney and currently Walton Fine Arts in Chelsea. Kasia is member of London based art group Expressive Collective.
What made you get into the art world? Is art something you ever thought about, was it related to previous activities of yours?
I was into arts since I can remember. As kid I used to watch my grandfather, who was an architect, sharpening his drawing pencils to perfection. He would hold the knife at an angle and carefully press it down against the end of the pencil, shaving it off bit by bit. He would rotate the pencil so that each side was shaved evenly. It was an amazing view, I can still remember woody smell of color edged pencil leftovers falling down and how perfectly sharp the end of the pencil was. It was a beautiful and mesmerizing sight for young kid.
I quickly discovered that as my grandpa I can draw too and since that moment I knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to be an artist.
How do you choose the themes of your works?
I take inspiration from human nature. I'm interested in how it's influenced by biology and society we live in. I'm constantly observing people's relationships with each other and with their environment.
Why is it that we are gradually divorcing ourselves from nature? How rules of behavior that we've developed throughout the ages and implemented on ourselves, affect our daily lives? How can we be capable of great noble causes and at the same time be authors of worst atrocities? All this questions are present in my art; I make them subjects of my illustrations.
Is there a message in your art? How do you relate it to your personal experience?
In my art I ask people various questions. Are you happy? What does it mean, if you are? Are you scared of being alone or are you perfectly fine with it? These and other questions are my way of exploring the world. Sometimes it's not even about finding the answer as much as getting to know a person, to familiarize yourself with another human being and a completely different point of view. I'm interested in people's opinions and their personal experiences and usually they share it with you when you share yours first.
Could you please tell us about the creative process since initial thoughts to completion?
Usually I start with the research which sometimes can take even up to two days. I look for photographs, graphics, symbols that I could put together in order to transfer idea that's already in my head onto paper. Then, drawing starts. I work with biro pens so process can be painfully slow as lots of detail is involved. Depending on size I'm working on, it might take from 2 days up to 2 weeks.
What would be your dream collaboration?
I would love to collaborate with an artist who creates spaces. My dream project would be to create an interactive space filled with things that you could walk into and immerse yourself in it. I don't have anyone particular in mind but if you know anyone interested in creating some fantasy worlds please let me know!
Who has influenced you the most?
I don't think there is just one person, artist in my life that has influenced me the most but if I had to point one it would have to be my mum. She was always my inspiration of how you can outcome every obstacle and tackle it bit by bit. I've learned from her to face problems standing straight not to shun away from them. She's a strong, beautiful and inspiration woman.
What other artists do you admire? What is your favourite piece of art?
I admire a lot of artists. But if I was to mention few it would have to be Matthieu Venot French abstract photographer, painter Sungsoo Kim and illustrators Ze Otavio and sticky monsters author John Kenn Mortensen. As for my favourite piece of art I'm trying to find in my memory some particular painting or illustration but the only thing that comes to my mind is Daft Punk's “Alive” album from 2007.That's an amazing piece of art!
How would you describe the current art scene in London and UK?
Diverse and inspirational. Mixture of cultures and styles
What are you working on currently? Any projects / ventures on the horizon?
Currently I'm working on something entirely new: a series of colorful abstract canvas paintings.
It's a completely new medium (acrylics) and surface for me as I've been working mostly with Biro pens for last two years so I'm quite excited about it. I like to stay away from course sometimes and escape from established way. It makes things fresh and gives you different perspective on things. It's good to explore different sides of your creativity; you never know where it will take you and what you'll find.
Last weekend of September I will have pleasure to show my drawings at #Tribe16 International Art Festival in London and hopefully at the end of the year I will exhibit at London Illustration Fair.