I don’t consider my work autobiographical in any way, but I do think a bit of context is useful to understand where this all comes from. A few factors from my childhood still influence who I am as a maker today.
Both sets of grandparents were immigrants to Canada: shopkeepers, factory workers and farmers. They moved often and picked up whatever skills necessary to gain employment and make money. My grandfather on my Dad’s side, or Deda as we say in Croatian, was a jack-of-all-trades builder. He collected manuals and a type of architectural catalogue which was popular from the 50’s to the 80’s in Canada, which offered plans and elevations for building your own home. I loved copying those technical diagrammes and schematic imagery appears in my work to this day.
Growing up across rural and suburban Canada as a bored kid meant I read a lot. I spent a lot of time at the public library reading things I didn’t quite understand at the time. Tom Wolfe, John Updike, Arthur C Clarke and lots of pulp crime like PD James. I drew a lot because it was cheap. I drew animals and copied things out of books. I took my dog for walks in the fields and verges where the housing developments bled into industrial farmland, listening to metal on my Discman and wandering around on my own. Before printmaking, I learned darkroom photography as a teenager, and most of the images I took were of these uniquely North American boring in-between landscapes that surrounded me. Concrete, weeds, sheds, lawns, roads, signs, big skies.
Today I draw inspiration from a range of sources, spanning high and low culture: dogs, animals, literature, punk & metal, folk art, DIY culture, comics, psychogeography, modernism, landscapes, decor, art & design history, eavesdropping and the built environment.