Vanessa Zelek is an abstract artist who makes large-scale works. Her expressive work is influenced by her environment and things in close proximity to her. Originally from Poland, she has been living in Co. Wexford since early childhood. Her work is an intuitive and spontaneous response to her immediate environment. She also delves into personal memories and feelings as she makes her work, allowing energy and gesture to come through. She participated in the IADT show In the Making: Milk at Pallas Projects (2023) and her work has been selected for exhibition Tooth at DIVA (2023).
I am drawn to abstraction as it allows me to focus on the experience of creating rather than the final outcome. My work is expressive and influenced by things that I experience daily. My project is process-based. It can’t feel stiff or still. It’s about movement and gesture, that kind of flow, mark-making. Using my body allows me to immerse myself in the painting. Different motions of the body and speed create different marks. I work in layers as it allows me to step back from the canvas and see it. An element of control is part of my work, it’s not purely chance. Being able to evoke a feeling or an emotion from a viewer is something that intrigues me, the fact that everyone responds differently. I like having an intimate connection to each work, emotion or memory. This is particularly important when titling a work, that personal connection between me and the painting.