Marcel Rozek uses a staining technique pioneered by the early abstractionists and Washington Color School artists to create his richly layered compositions. He aligns himself with these influential artists, most notably Morris Louis, while pushing beyond the successes of his predecessors and creating a new branch in the tree of color field painting. He begins with liquefied paint that he has mixed and diluted before pouring it directly onto raw unprimed canvas allowing the paint to generate organic shapes and movement.
1. Describe a real-life situation that inspired you to create?
Probably the first time I was introduced to true abstract painting in a lecture on Abstract Expressionism. I really was turned off by the paintings by Rothko and Pollock and thought that these works took no skill or thought. After a few days I realized I was still thinking about these paintings and hadn’t remembered much else from the lecture. They really left an impression on me. That’s when I realized there was much more to them then what I had initially thought and immediately fell in love with abstraction.
2. How did you decide on art as a career?
I worked a “conventional” job and realized I’d never be happy unless I followed my passion. So I quit my job and decided to be a full time artist.
3. Can you describe the time when you first realized that creating was something you absolutely had to do?
I think I always realized that. I always felt most myself when working with my hands and creating. Whether it was building model cars, carpentry, or tinkering with electronics. I really enjoyed the feeling of knowing that something now existed because I made it.
4. What jobs have you done other than being an artist?
I’ve worked in restaurants, grocery stores, delivery trucks, a machine shop, gas and oil fields, and a few other places.
5. What’s integral to the making of your work or of you being an artist?
Honestly, not painting. Living life and doing other things I enjoy like travelling, hiking, working on cars, golfing, whatever it may be, really grounds me and makes me feel like I’m living a life that’s worth living. These are feelings I can pull from to make art.
6. Could you please tell us about your creative process – from initial thoughts to completion?
When I get an idea for a painting, I start it immediately. As soon as I think of something I try to get it out as soon as possible. If I think about it too long or too much time goes by, it just muddies the waters.
7. What kind of patterns, routines or rituals do you have that help aid in your practice?
I do a lot of walking aimlessly in the studio. A lot of staring at a blank canvas. Almost like procrastinating.
8. What do you dislike about your work?
There are a lot of toxic fumes while I paint. A respirator is a must!
9. What is the best piece of advice you have been given?
I deserve to be here and to never think otherwise.
10. What research do you do before you begin your work?
I actually try not to research before painting. I like to go into the studio without a plan and let the ideas come naturally.
11. What are you trying to communicate with your art?
I try to invoke some sort of mood for the viewer to experience and feel. A feeling that is completely of their own but can connect with the work. I also try to focus on process. I want the viewers to ask themself “I wonder how he did that?”
12. Do you find the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
I do in a positive way. I enjoy my alone time in the studio and being by myself. I also enjoy meeting other artist and connecting around art. But I think I enjoy the independence of being an artist the most.
13. Name something you love, and why.
I love great architecture. I found a great appreciation for good architecture and design at an early age, especially that of the mid century modern era. To me, it’s a piece of art you can live and exist in
14. Which creative medium would you love to pursue but haven’t yet?