Erica Pastecki is a joy personified. If you have ever had the pleasure of meeting this local artist, you know how uplifting she can be, and this translates into her artworks. Erica has been creating her whole life. According to her, she cannot remember a time when she wasn’t. Being raised in a Military family that was stationed overseas when she was younger, she gained the world impression of other and magic, inspiring and motivating her to make art wherever she was – a testament of goodness, working hard to make improvements herself, where she can, and using her art as a tool to do so.
She sharpens her tools with experience. With an almost 20 year background in sales, marketing, events, graphic design, book illustration, teaching, working with many different organizations such as The Augusta Chronicle, Fort Gordon, Verge Magazine, The Boys and Girls Club, the Greater Augusta Arts Council, The Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art, and 4P Studios, Erica tries to remain active in as many groups as possible to help facilitate positive growth and arts support within our local community.
When not teaching or helping to organize local events she also continues to develop her own body of work. (Housed In private collections throughout the United States). A huge fan of all things color and Pop-Art, Erica’s current body of work is titled “The Apron Series.” In this series she explores her own love-hate relationships with gender roles, technology, and the passing of time.
“I’m very tomboyish, and I think a lot about ‘what does it mean’ to be a woman. I also ponder a lot on what does it mean to be alive…and if and how one can truly live,” elaborating that “people seem to tend to hold themselves back from their true desires,” she said. The series is a little cheeky and fun and usually has snarky titles like “Just Because I Want a New Apron Doesn’t Mean that I Can Cook.”
One of her personal favorites she has created in this series is “Things Are Starting to Look Up.” This acrylic based painting was completed in March of 2022 for “The High Water: Project Happy Water’s Kickoff Fundraiser” at 600 Broad.
Working so closely with local artists has afforded Erica an amazing network of creatives, from fellow visual artists, to musicians, to performers, to writers. Charmain Zimmerman Bracket received an honorable mention when Erica was posed with the question : “Who is your favorite local artist?” Her response: “Oh my gosh, I love them all!”
“One of my favorite artists, to read and to collaborate with, is local Author, Charmain Zimmerman Brackett. I LOVE reading all her books and with me coming from a Newspaper background, I really appreciate all her work throughout the years at The Augusta Chronicle and now at The Augusta Press.”
She and Charmain did a collaborative children’s book : “Little Pearl’s Circus World” which was based off of author Charmain’s own family history. Erica created illustrations for the story, You can find this book locally at The Book Tavern and online.
You can also find Erica’s artwork on display around the Augusta River Region. This includes venues such as 4P Studios, New Moon Café in Downtown Augusta, New Moon Cafe Aiken, The Greater Augusta Arts Council’s “Art the Box” project, her’s located at the corner of 7th and Broad Street and many different group shows throughout the year.
Upcoming courses and exhibitions include:
You can experience a painting course with her on Oct. 15th titled: “Coffee and Canvases.” This is an all ages (adult/youth) Morning Paint Party Class where you can paint a Spooky-Pumpkin-Kitty
at Buona Café Artisan Roasted Coffee House in Downtown Augusta off Reynolds Street. For you Star Wars fans, she is also participating in an “Star Wars Reads Day” Artists Alley on Oct. 15 at The Augusta Library.
Two of Erica’s paintings were selected for the 6th Annual October Spooktacular on display at Augusta & Co. Gallery from Sept 29th – Nov 3rd, 2022. Her artwork “Fresh Squeezed Lemonade” was chosen to be featured as the cover art for the show flyer. Her works for this showcase are part of a series of colorful re-interpretations of iconic horror film villains enjoying some summer fun.
You can also find her work online. Including social media sites such as Facebook .
Erica has worked closely wth the Greater Augusta Arts Council and is a huge supporter for our Annual WetPaint Party and Art Sale.
“I appreciate all they [The Arts Council] strive to do and ALL the work they put in to make it all happen. I don’t know if many people realize what a small team it really is that makes up the driving force behind it all. Besides their events always being a lot of fun, I enjoy how they encourage artists and art organizations to learn and work together in so many different aspects.
For me, some of the other biggest benefits for being an Arts Council member is staying in the know of all the fun art stuff coming up throughout the year, meeting new artists and art lovers, and helping to spread art and art appreciation to more people throughout the area… and it’s just really exciting to see more and more art appreciation, education, and opportunities as the years continue on. Augusta is a great place to be an artist. What I’m most gaga about, More art means a brighter happier community – I hope people can enjoy it all and it can encourage everyone to take pride in our home town.”