Shana Dennis: How would you describe the work that you do, and are there any dominating themes present in your work?
Barbie Procobis: My work, no matter the medium, is always an exploration of psychological ideas. I’m currently working on a body of work that incorporates ideas of dissociation, isolation, regression, and the subconscious.
Childhood comforts, and imaginary friends, are also present in my work, even if just as a subtle undertone. But I love when my work has some element of humour, an aspect that make the viewer go “Ha, that’s pretty amusing.”
SD: Have there been any inspirational people that have supported you in your art practice?
BP: My support network is quite large these days, ranging from old teachers from high school, to artists and designers around Australia who I only know through Facebook! But my biggest supporter is my husband, who puts up with me making a mess in every room of our house and my constant need to think/talk/make art.
SD: What are some of the things you’ve accomplished, great or small, when it comes to your art and art practice so far?
BP: I think the biggest achievement so far is learning to let go and become more experimental, which has lead to so many exciting things in my practice and makes me a very happy chappy.
On top of that, more tangible achievements include being published in the last 3 Semi-Permanent books, being a finalist in the 2009 & 2011 Lloyd Rees Youth Art Prize, and winning the Watt Space Open Show in 2011.
SD: What kind of space do you work in when you create?
BP: It really depends on my mood! Some days I love being in the studio at uni, other days I just want to sit at the dining table or on the lounge room floor! But the one place that I’ve always worked is my bed; I love getting into bed with some paper and drawing until I fall asleep. Basically if I have materials, I can and will work anywhere!
SD: Is there anything you are currently working on, and what are your plans for the future?
BP: I’m currently in my last semester of my undergraduate degree, which will conclude with 3 exhibitions at Watt Space Gallery. I’m also co-curating 2 group shows at Watt Space.
I’m starting Honours mid-year, and eventually I plan to complete a PhD in Fine Art. But until then I plan to keep making and selling art, exhibiting as often as possible and getting my name out there!
SD: Last but not least, where can people find more of your work and keep up to date with what you are up to?
BP: You can follow my work on www.facebook.com/bariebo.art, and I am in the process of building an online portfolio!
Article by Shana Dennis. All images © Barbie Procobis, used with permission