Meet Vibrant Femmes Artist Julia Lunk. We Caught up with Julia to ask her a few questions before her show at madelife.
Vibrant Femmes Gallery Opening:
April 7th, 2018
Describe yourself and your work:
Hungarian born and raised painter, Boulder resident for the last seventeen years, with a strong desire for being out of doors and seeking solitude often to replenish the mind rich with dreams. My works are altars l laden with symbols of life-giving energies. Preserving the inner child has been helpful for finding sparks daily.
Who or what has been your biggest influence?
The many miracles experienced first hand in life, Nature’s endless beauty and renewal. Birth and death. Music. Some humans. Lush.
How did you get started in your career as an artist?
I painted a Hoopoe bird ((Upupa epops) in first grade and my teacher displayed the painting in the classroom for a long time. I kept getting commissioned to make all kinds of art: a zoo made of sculpty, descriptive geometry projects for classmates, until I was invited to a plein air art symposium to where I returned every summer for ten years, that is where I realized the urge to visually express myself. From then and after spending years studying fine art at the university I went through ebbs and flows of spontaneously painting. I have been painting for twenty five years.
What piece of work best represents you and why?
“The Traveler”. A piece from 1998 that I gave to my Mom… A bird on wheels, an image that appeared previous to my big move to the USA two years later.
How do your materials influence your work?
I prefer fast-drying paint, watercolor, usually smaller surfaces to work on for what I paint in Hungary or elsewhere during the summer.
Where do you go daily / weekly to get inspired?
Absorption of such materials ideas is constant and difficult to document.
What have you learned through creating that has surprised you?
There is a Source… The key to the flow is to connect with it. And lots of lots of practice. I used to think that “we” the artist come up with the ideas.
Describe your work routine for your artistic practice.
Ideally, a week or ten days of undisturbed (by children and daily tasks as cooking, errands, work) body of time and space makes me settle into a pretty sweet flow: 8-10 hours of working on multiple new pieces per day. for the whole week. I am a morning person and the work schedule lately is quite erratic: taking care of my toddler son and teenage daughter the household and small business makes me work whenever and wherever I can, requires giving myself time to finish a commission triple the time, so I calculate with that. I always work on many pieces. Right now I am getting ready for the Vibrant Femmes Show at Madelife and panting a food truck’s four large murals outdoors.
Tell us about any recent collaborations, why they worked or didn’t.
I loved live-painting to live music a couple years ago, although these collaborations were pleasantly one-sided to my benefit. I have not found myself a collaborating individual, I would be pleasantly surprised if the opposite would prove true.
How do you balance being an artist and making a living?
I take care of my kids, household, a gardening business, and my creative business which all needs to be colorfully layered and in proportions based on priorities. To gain quiet special time and space I often decline social gatherings to an acceptable level. The ingredients essential to balance: plenty physical activities, bodily and spiritual nourishment, visual expression, I thrive on consistent random influences.
What is your process for coming up with new work?
Journaling, sketchbooks, journaling more, engaging in projects with deadlines, thinking about it, dreaming about it, hands-on, starting the painting asap.
Why do you believe art has value?
I am unable to believe otherwise.
What is playing on your stereo these days?
Hungarian folk music, trashy tween-hip hop, KGNU, CPR, the Hawaiian public radio station, Lebanese pop music, Finnish reggae.
What are you reading right now?
Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle/ Book Four, Alexandra Fuller’s newest memoir, catching up on many unfinished articles in the New Yorker, The Harper’s.
Where is your favorite place to visit?
Bársonyos, Budapest and Lake Balaton in Hungary, the island of Bornholm on the Baltic Sea, my borrowed garden on Sunshine Canyon.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve received in your creative career?
I am not sure if I have received it yet… These worked for me:
1. book shows in advance, but be ready with works for spontaneous offers of exhibitions.
2. Take risks.
3. Procrastination is for someone else to thrive on.
Which new (or newly discovered) artist is currently inspiring you the most?
Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgaard, Antarctica explorer Henry Worsley, people who grow food to feed others, brain surgeons. Many artists on social media, all forgettable.
What’s the best thing about your studio/ workspace/ workshop?
That I can work in any space with a table and sufficient light. I am in between studios right now, looking forward to living in the beautiful new space with my work energy, and let my son enjoy his first own bedroom in the studio I’ve come up with so many ideas.
What do you do when you hit a block?
I work more. Music helps. Move my physical body outside. Clean the house. Read in Hungarian or listen to the Hungarian radio to refresh roots.
What’s the best part about being an artist?
Endless experimenting, play, and self-contentment with the side effect of possibly sparking joy or other emotions in the onlookers. My way of connecting to the outside world while processing its noise and music simultaneously.