Adriana Polanic’s Artistic Explorations of Identity


By combining realistic forms with negative space, Adriana Polanic’s work attempts to emphasize our infatuation with women’s bodies and their reduction to sexualized parts. The challenging relationship between self and body is also a common theme in her drawings, which is indicated by the exclusion of faces and limbs using alternate media and collage. Feelings of liminal space within the mind, as well as explorations of identity, are made prominent through the work’s sense of not knowing one’s true self.

Adriana Polanic is a Toronto based artist from Waterloo, Ontario. Upon graduating from OCAD University’s BFA program with a degree in Drawing & Painting in 2016, she continues to pursue gallery representation as well as a career in teaching/arts program direction. Her drawings currently exhibit in the city of Toronto while she progresses towards showcasing work throughout other celebrated cities.

“Art-making and crafting has been my favourite pastime since childhood. I took as many art classes as I could throughout highschool and attended a few local workshops as a teenager.”

Adriana explains that her interest in drawing nude figures started during her years at OCAD.

“The female form is of course a relatable subject matter to me, being a woman myself, but I’d like to explore drawing men too.”

She gets a lot of her creative inspiration from other artists whom she comes across online where she loves exploring their styles, artistic expressions and themes.

“I really admire Daniel Segrove’s mixed media work, and I love the theme/style of Frances Waite’s drawings. I also think Jerry Saltz is a really intriguing person and his interests in art seem to match some of my own.”

Adriana works from her own home. Not having an actual art studio at her home at this time, she dreams of either setting up one or joining a shared group studio where she can work alongside other artistic minds. But for now, she makes do with what she has got by keeping her art supplies neatly organized in their own closet and drawing materials from it as needed during her creative process.

“When I’m drawing I feel extremely focused and detail oriented. I get a certain sense of productivity and satisfaction when I’ve completed something that I’m happy with. Viewing other artists’ work peaks my interest mostly, especially when it comes to use of media and technique.”

Mostly focusing on drawing women in candid poses or interesting arrangements, Adriana utilizes graphite blending technique to give them shape and form. She admits that her style is in a progress of getting more and more developed year after year with practice and exposure to her inspirations.

“While I was a student at OCAD I took several figure drawing classes and realized how much I enjoy drawing bodies. At first I started using masking tape to cover up areas in my drawings that I didn’t like or couldn’t finish, and this led to the inclusion of other materials in my work.”

When asked to describe her challenges as an artist, Adriana reveals that she tends to be very picky and particular about shading and mark-making, which makes it “a big challenge” to allow herself more freedom and carelessness in her work.

“This is something that I’ve tried to acknowledge by including scribbles, tape, and collage in my drawings, but I feel like I could still take this idea a step further.”

As she works on rooting herself deeper within the Artistic landscape, Adriana has several goals which she has set for herself. On this trajectory, she is working on showcasing her drawings as much as possible, joining an Artist Association or Collective, as well as participating in juried exhibitions and contests in order to increase her chances of winning recognition awards.

Adriana has worked at a kid’s art studio for about a year teaching drawing, painting, and ceramics lessons,  which inspired her to start dreaming of having an art school of her own one day.

Adriana accepts commissions. Follow her social media account on Instagram to help her grow her art practice!




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *