Boris Pramatarov: Restrictions in Bulgaria make me work harder

name: Boris Pramatarov

age: 24

education: Bachelor in Book  and Printed Graphics at the National Academy of Art/ Master in Graphic Design at The Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Ghent (KASK)

residence: Ghent, Belgium

Mokuso: How do ideas come to mind?  

Boris Pramatarov: They come from people around me, the environment, the city, communication and things I see on the web.

M: Thanks to your exhibition called Tormentor we found out that you draw your fears. Which fear do you do most often? 

B.P: The whole name Tormentor and the book My Demons means torture, torturer, means what wats you inside and doesn’t give you tranquillity. Everybody look for their inner calmness and in my oppinion it’s almost impossible to achieve.

M: Maybe it’s impossible for you, because you have too many things to say. 

B.P: Fear comes with fantasy. My thoughts and ideas are connected, the more I think – the more ideas I get. What might happen, what is not as it should be, what won’t give you comfort in the future.

M: By showing your fears do you have a particular message to send or do you prefer to provoke audiences to discover something in your work?

B.P: I prefer that my works provoke people to think about their own things, make them discover their own fears and ideas, not fears even but just to make them think. Through my works they must make new associations, see their demons and thoughts.

M: Are there people, who don’t see anything?

B.P: Mostly I draw, because I need to and I do it for the people, who I know will understand me rather for those who won’t.

M: What did you want to become when you were a child?  

B.P: Agronomist and a cook, thanks to my grandmothers’ irradiation. Now I grow my own potatoes and I love the connection with the nature, how I feel and how the ground smells.

M: And were at that time the two professions related in your mind? 

B.P: They were more like separated flows depending on the grandma. When I was young I loved cooking and being in the nature, then I didn’t relate both things, but now I do. It’s to cook your own home grown food.

M: You were in Seoul, South Korea on a students exchange programme. We’ve heard everybody were enchanted by you and called you in a specific way. How? 

B.P: They told me I was “free”. They were very happy that I draw what I want, because my works are very sexual. In Korea I was not worried at all for being late for classes :)

M: Do you have idols in art?

B.P: I’ve always tried not to be influenced a lot, but there are couple of artists who I admire – Brecht Evens and Brecht Vanderbroucke. Both are belgians. Belgian artists are extremely advanced in illustration, in general and Western Europe also. Many people work in this illustrative style, they are diverse and there is demand on the market for this type of art.

M: Where did you do the book My Demons?

B.P: In South Korea, it was a project for the classes.

M: Did you draw in kindergarten?

B.P: I draw since I can and maybe can’t remember myself. Mokuso: More normal stuff? (joking)  – Boris: Yes, more normal (laughing)

M: How has your drawing style developed? 

B.P: Couple of books have inspired me – Orwell’s 1984 and Steinbeck’s East of Eden.

M: How do you define the proportion talent/hard work?

B.P: I believe one must work very hard. I am more free and calm when I’ve worked more. When I do a small break in time I think I forget some things and it takes me more time while drawing afterwards. 


M: What materials do you use most often? 

B.P: Ink. Black Rotring. I love it the most. Big dark spots – I see better in the dark. I work with two sizes of technical pens.

M: What is the relation between idea and technics? If an idea pops up is there something that can stop you from actualizing it on paper? 

B.P: Both things are related, especially with the black-and-white technics I feel so free I almost don’t think about it rather than about the idea itself. I like black and white, it helps me with my ideas, I love my works clean and organized and so that you can see everything. When I change technics I get different ideas.

M: The exhibition in Hip-Hip Atelier was very successful. What did it give you and take from you?

B.P: I found new friends, real friends. And it took me some beliefs – I made a lot of conclusions about me and people around me, who’s real and who’s fake. In some way I understood who supports me sincerely, and about friends I judge not by who’s with me in dark days, but when I have fun – I want to have fun with real friends.

M: Did you observe the reactions of the visitors during the exhibition? 

B.P: More like no. I was with them and we were communicating. I find out who liked it afterwards.

M: Do you feel restricted or stimulated when you work in Bulgaria?

B.P: Restrictions in Bulgaria make me work harder, so I can avoid them in the future.

M: Does Inspiration fly with a plane (considering the exotic destinations you’ve been to)? 

B.P: It flies and there it met more inspirations. They formed something like Voltron.

(Very productive Voltron we might add)


Boris took part in many exhibitions, festivals and seminars during the last year. Recently one of his illustrations was published as a part of the “Traumas” article in New York Times. To his portfolio he added another solo exhibition in Barbossa, Burgas, where he also presented his second book – Doppelgänger.

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