Sera Senakovicz grew up in British Columbia and moved to Nova Scotia in 2005. Since graduating from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design she has been making prints wherever and however she can. She has been a recipient of two creation grants from ARTS Nova Scotia to help her to attend a residency at Spark Box Studios and to make a new body of work for a solo exhibition at Parentheses Gallery this past February.
how lives are lived
My biggest influences are people and buildings I interact with every day. I am interested in oral histories of neighbourhoods and buildings and how lives are lived within and around them. I make large scale prints or print-like work. Most recently I have been using my woodblocks to create dimly lit depictions of some of Halifax’s lost neighbourhoods. I believe it is important to learn and understand (as much as possible) the lived history of the spaces we occupy and how we transform them.
protect my practice
My biggest challenge by far is myself. I can be hypercritical and stop before I begin. The biggest help has been talking through these thought processes with more established artists and making sure to “protect my practice” by setting aside time to devote to the work. There are also challenges specifically with printmaking because I don’t have studio access to the equipment needed for making lithographs, silkscreens or relief prints. There are ways around printing relief work at home but lately I am more interested in the carving itself and have been pushing my printmaking practice off the paper.
I was searching for support and guidance in my artistic practice and was told about the VANS Mentorship Program. I was lucky enough to participate in the program and be placed with an exceptional artist and mentor: Ericka Walker. The program was such an important opportunity for me. As an emerging artist I can’t recommend the VANS Mentorship Program enough. The program was the perfect way to bridge the gap left between school and “professional artist”. It feels like VANS is always looking out for me with workshops, and creating connections for me with other artists in Nova Scotia.
through the memories of spaces shared
My most recent and ongoing body of work “You Can’t Go Home Again” is a search for personal histories of Halifax neighbourhoods, more specifically the ones demolished to build the Cogswell Interchange/Scotia Square and create a concrete wasteland between the downtown and Gottingen Street area. I am interested in learning about people’s lives through the memories of spaces shared and how our built landscapes shape us. I recently moved from Halifax and this project has been a way of staying connected with a place that may forever be home.
I am looking forward to working more collaboratively in the future to make work outside of the gallery setting and reflect more of my interest in the built environment.