What Matters to Hanna Barczyk

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Debbie Millman has an ongoing project at PRINT titled “What Matters.” This is an effort to understand the interior life of artists, designers, and creative thinkers. This facet of the project is a request of each invited respondent to answer ten identical questions and submit a nonprofessional photograph.

Hanna Barczyk is an award-winning illustrator and visual artist who uses her Hungarian heritage to create bold, conceptual narratives inspired by folk art, tapestries, old movie posters, and more.

What is the thing you like doing most in the world?

Drinking espresso with my partner, discussing art, ideas, and the expansion of life.

What is the first memory you have of being creative?

Drawing all kinds of figures with pencil on the walls with my twin sister— we were probably 5 years old years old and I remember getting in trouble for it.

What is your biggest regret?

Not knowing my boundaries earlier in life.

How have you gotten over heartbreak?

Dancing to let go of emotions and talking with my family and friends.

What makes you cry?

Listening to Vivaldi, Winter. It’s the last song my father requested to hear when I was with him before he passed away.

How long does the pride and joy of accomplishing something last for you?

Not very long— usually I don’t want to think about it, or else it makes me feel stuck, so I just move on as soon as I accomplished something.

Do you believe in an afterlife, and if so, what does that look like to you?

We have this singular life on earth as we are. I believe when we die, we all reunite with the universe.

What do you hate most about yourself?

Worrying that the worst can happen. 

What do you love most about yourself?

Resilience, curiosity, imagination, and the ability to stay focused on life and art.

What is your absolute favorite meal?

My mom’s Hungarian bean soup.