Born and raised in Slovenia, Mladen Stropnik worked as a teacher until in 2008, aged 31, he began life as a full-time artist. Influenced by the likes of Nataša Skušek, Res Nullius and Junoš Miklavc, his colourful art is both deeply abstract and grounded in the physical realities of whatever he's using to create it.
"I try to be raw with the material," he stresses. "I examine the concept through various media as far as I am able." Once completed, the work has a sense of simplicity. "I show what you see. There is no story behind [it]."
It's also grounded in a deep attachment to his homeland, he adds. "I live in a place where people hang out together in peace," he says. "I am looking for moments... It does not matter if I am awake, dreaming or imagining [them].
"Everything is happening right now, and there is no space or time. Music and water are important. A clear idea is an art. Everything that is simple is good. Life is a ride and then you go to sleep."
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