Written by Erika L. Block
Amy Soczka has dedicated her life to creating contrasting beauty in a constantly evolving environment. She is best known for her large-scale paintings of densely-grown landscapes featuring “not-quite real” flowers and foliage. Her current work is a series of acrylic paintings on canvas depicting lush floral motifs, geometric and natural patterns, and the occasional portrait of imagined figures. She is inspired in part by the patterns in nature and architecture, and is heavily influenced by the illustration and graphic design of styles of the 1980’s. “When I was very young we had Lisa Frank designs on everything, and I remember being so impressed by this person whose drawings were everywhere but I had no concept of how that worked. I loved how crazy those designs were, so perfectly 80’s. We are so inundated with imagery in a new way now – constantly taking in information and processing it however we do, and I probably have hundreds of artists that I love now that reach a bit beyond the cover of my 4th grade Trapper Keeper®.” Later on, she saw a poster of Gustav Klimt’s “The Kiss” which sparked a passion for the artist and others like him, finding herself drawn to the unique color palette and geometric designs. It is easy to spot this unlikely combination of influences, as well as her former career in graphic design, within Soczka’s current body of work.
Amy earned her BFA from MIAD (Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design) and studied for one year at Istituto Europeo di Design in Turin, Italy. She was employed as a graphic designer for ten years and ran a small wholesale stationary business on the side before becoming an artist full time. Soczka realized that the traditional workplace was not for her, and “said goodbye to the desk life” when her first child was born. She purchased a home that included a large pole barn (previously used as a vintage car museum) and created an ideal studio space, which changed her entire approach to her work. “It is quite literally my younger self’s dream come true.”
Her greatest hope for anyone viewing her work is that it causes pause. “I would like to imagine someone standing as close as they can get to the work, and for them to get lost in a daydream.” She also hopes that viewers will find their own ideas and meanings within the work. “I feel like we all have some overlapping stories, I just hope my work makes an appearance in a few new ones.”
Amy’s work is included in the permanent collection at The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas as well as in the homes of several private collectors. To learn more about Amy Soczka and her work, please visit amysoczka.com and follow her on Instagram at instagram.com/amysoczka.
Click here to hear her interview on FRANK & CO Podcast.
Get your hands on a copy at the following locations: Eighty Art & Design, Lakeshore Art Supplies, LLC, The Pink Llama Gallery, Plymouth Arts Center, Riverwalk Art Center, and the Algoma Chamber of Commerce.
Erika L. Block is a professional writer and designer working exclusively with the art, music, publishing, film and fashion industries. She is also a contemporary mixed media artist.
Stay connected: instagram.com/erikalblock