I am really inspired by people, old faces, hands, children’s faces, women, and nature…
I met Roman Řehák one year ago at the opening of his exhibition Phone Art at Pop Art Center in Prague. He has been a fan of smartphones for the last few years and he wanted to get actively involved in modifying and editing pictures in his own unique and eccentric artistic way. The last two years he transforms his favorite photos into paintings. So far, he has created a dozen of paintings, comic books and digital humorous sketches in Czech.
Roman finds his inspiration in his daily life. He is sociable and his connection with people in the field of culture, such as the major Czech photographer, Jakub Ludvík, and the well-known Czech make-up artist Kathy Gajewska, inspired and motivated him to create original and meaningful art pieces.
On the occasion of the 10th iPhone Anniversary, Roman presented his originally created pictures at Pop Art Center through the Phone Art exhibition. The artist creates and materializes digital contents using iPhone applications on big canvasses with the help of print. Most of the prints are enriched with acrylic and oil paints.
Meet Roman Řehák and his eccentric mystery prints…
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So, Roman, you currently live in Prague. You studied at Charles University. Is that right?
Yes… And I live in Prague now.
I am going to start with your latest exhibition which is hosted at the Pop Art Center in Prague. What is the story behind “Phone Art”? How did you decide to explore this kind of art?
Actually, I always enjoyed painting; especially when I was younger. About four years ago, I realized that I am more interested in making art through my iPhone! So, I started doing it more! About a year ago, Jakub Ludvík called me telling me that he liked my work and he wanted to buy one of my prints. That’s when we decided to make an exhibition out of it.
During our talks, you mentioned that for your photographs are really powerful. Is this why you chose to re-create photos? How do you select them?
I leave the photo selection to my senses… I choose the photos from my interests and my instincts. I always try to create a story for each photo. Much depends on the energy that comes out of the picture…
Describe to us one of your techniques. Which are the most common tools that you are using to make your creations?
This kind of art is created by bringing together many photo-editing applications on iPhone. There are a lot of tools available, cropping tools, different filters that one can adjust or even make them oneself. Plus, I’ m editing the photos using several different styles like cartoons, shading, etc.
What inspires you?
I am really inspired by people, old faces, hands, children’s faces, women, and nature… Basically, everything the world has to offer.
Is Art your way of sending your message to the world?
In a way, everyone who makes art tries to send their message to the world. For me, it’s my personal view and my perception of the energy that comes through each photograph. I want people to see what I am seeing…
Who are your favorite artists?
Salvador Dali, Jan Saudek, and Milos Forman as a great artist in the cinema!
You also create comics. You “mock” reality and society in a way…
It’s not just ridiculed. It’s something more…
Do you think that Prague helps up-coming artists? Is this the right place to live, create, and expand your audience?
In my opinion, and from the experience I’ve had so far in Prague, this city is a very “helpful” place for the artists. My exhibition opened and closed with Oldřich Lomecký. And we continue to cooperate with each other ever since…
Which are your next steps? Are you planning another exhibition?
Next steps… I always try to move my work further. As you may have seen through my last exhibition at Pop Art Center, each image is created in a different way, with another technique and a unique approach to me. That’s me know. I want to continue doing that, and even more than that.
Thank you very much for this interview!