Artist Portrait: Erica Pastecki

Applause celebrates an artist in our community bi-weekly.

Erica Pastecki has been making and selling her artwork for as long as she can remember.


“I started drawing My Little Pony, and I noticed the curves on the sides of the horse’s head,” she said.

Incorporating those curves and the flowing nature of the mane were among her first artistic insights. Her classmates were so impressed they paid her quarters, dimes and nickels to draw them, and they later passed them off as their own.

Pastecki’s work has come a long way from those My Little Pony days and has recently turned a corner.

“I usually do dark and spooky work,” she said. Her latest series of paintings has a 1950s pop art feel but still explores some of the issues her darker side is drawn to.

“I have a love-hate relationship with gender. I’m very tomboyish, and I think a lot about ‘what does it mean’ to be a woman,” she said.

Her paintings are also a commentary on technology and the fast pace of technology with a snarky twist, she said.

Pastecki holds a bachelor of fine arts and teaches art at Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art. She will be featured at the art institute’s seventh annual Spring Market and Festival, which begins with a wine-and-cheese reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, March 15. The festival will be from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 16, and the artists’ works will be available through March 22.