Marko Mavrovich reconnects with America and collectors through art
“I don’t get to enjoy them, as soon as they’re done they go out for framing,” he said with a chuckle.
But Mavrovich, the son of a watercolor artist, did more than examine his own works during the February 27 event. In fact, he was drawing inspiration from everything around him, and opened up to Park West Gallery about how his observations and travels are inspiring his latest endeavors.
Mavrovich said he is always observing the world around him, whether it’s light reflecting off of water or the way shadows fall on someone’s face. By doing so, he says he only paints what he has experienced or seen first-hand, thereby keeping his work original and genuine. He compared it to the difference of baking apple pie with fresh apples versus canned apples.
“If you can stay close to the original item, that is when the painting comes out the best,” he said.
For instance, a chilly walk through New York around two years ago inspired him to depict the city in some of his more recent works, a shift from his tropical and European scenes. Instead of a traditional canvas, he chose to paint some of the works on pieces of aluminum with a monochromatic color palette to capture what he felt and saw during his visit.
He also used this technique to create a series of scenes involving fields, churches and vintage trucks for some nostalgic, Americana-themed works.
“I’m going through a period to re-connect with America,” he said. “I’m not trying to exploit it too much, just to use it appropriately and gingerly.”
He said he has enjoyed working with Park West, not only because he can connect with other artists, but also for giving him the chance to meet and speak with collectors.
“I have dozens of stories from cruises and you people being with me and laughing and having such a good time,” he said to the VIP crowd at the Henry. “It’s inspiring me to create more work.”
When creating art, Mavrovich tends to travel to places where “the food has to agree with him,” such as Italy, Croatia or Spain, and takes a camera or sketchbook to capture inspiration. He loves listening to music when painting, starting with country in the morning, switching to hard rock mid-day and ending with R&B, jazz and hip-hop.
Mavrovich attributes his initial interest in art to his father, who passed away at the age of 53. A young Mavrovich would sneak into his father’s studio to see him working.
“He was a true artist,” he said.
Mavrovich’s parents wanted him to attend art school in Venice, but when his father became ill, he instead became a sea captain to help take care of his family. Eventually, though, when Mavrovich returned to the U.S., he decided to become an artist full time.
Mavrovich’s recent efforts go beyond creating art. He helped out the Kentucky Pro Bass Warrior Organization, a group that coordinates fishing trips for veterans and their families, with a fundraiser on February 28. He said he likes to contribute to programs that assist veterans, such as Pets for Vets, and also supports organizations like the Humane Society.
“When I was younger it was about just surviving, and after a while you say ‘okay, it’s time to do something’ and give back,” he said.