Peter Kozak, Brisbane
- Personally I like things that are handmade. I like to see people’s hands in the work.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your work
I’m 31-years-old. I originally trained in drawing at the Tasmanian School of Art in Hobart, but now work mainly in video and installation. My current practice is concerned with representations of trauma and perceptions of the body.
How would you compare the traditional practice of drawing to the digital approach?
I don’t have much experience with digital drawing. I think the results can be quite similar. I have friends who work mostly digitally, when they show me pictures of their work I often have to ask “is this hand drawn or drawn on a computer?” Personally I like things that are handmade. I like to see people’s hands in the work.
How do you feel the practice of drawing evolved over the past 10 years?
I think how an image reproduces digitally has become a bigger concern for artists working in drawing and other traditional mediums over the last 10 years, with the rise of the internet audience. An example of this, I have a friend who started using thicker outlines in his drawings when he realised that they reproduced better digitally, as it’s more likely that people will view his work online than in real life. For myself also, to document my latest series of drawings I decided to have them digitally scanned because the light pencil marks didn’t translate well photographically.
Why are competitions like the Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing important within Australian Arts culture?
I think more than anything else prizes like the Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing are important for giving artists encouragement to continue with their practice. I got a huge lift from winning the prize in 2012, when at the time I was feeling kind of insecure about my practice.
Why is the practice of drawing important to you?
Even though my practice has evolved more into video work it is still definitely informed by my background in drawing. The first piece of video art that I made, which showed a vapour trail being made and then fading away, is an example of what I would call ‘expanded drawing’ in its use of line, spatiality and temporality.
In what ways did winning the Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing affect your drawing practice?
It gave me more confidence in my work and has helped facilitate a closer relationship with Jugglers.