By Pam Kiriakidis
ADDING to his collection of murals, artist Eric Sesto has painted a snapshot of Kilmore on a water tank at Montana Kilmore’s sales office.
Channelling his childhood where he was raised in Tooborac and educated at The Kilmore International School, Mr Sesto used what he knew about the shire on the mural.
“Kilmore has always had such a cute, well-groomed little town, which provided the benefits of living close to the city while enjoying the country air, space and tranquillity,” he said.
“I’ve chosen to focus on the beauty of manicured, suburban nature, in particular garden flowers and lush green grass.”
Mr Sesto said he combined his appreciation of the town’s uniqueness and his own understanding of art, which began at age five when he realised it was his calling.
“I tried to paint it in as blank a way as possible because people grow up in these areas and very often children grow up on an empty plot of land and over their lifetime, it really becomes something,” he said.
“When I was a little kid my grandma used to put out paints and paper – that was the activity she had for me when I went to her house every single weekend – and she used to have this painting on the wall by my great uncle and I used to stare at it for so long.
“I guess all I had as a kid was walking around paddocks and I really learned to see things rather than just general grass and sky.’
Mr Sesto painted his first mural at Tooborac Recreation Reserve earlier this year.
He was introduced to murals during his trip to South and Central America, where became ‘obsessed’ with the concept after he painted his first wall.
When he is not painting murals, Mr Sesto focuses on drawings, paintings and oil pastels, of human anatomy and psychology, which he discovered after 10 years of experimenting with his own art.
“I guess I’ve really come to have such an interest in neurodiversity, this intersection between kind of biology and psychology, these sort of things,” he said.
Mr Sesto still goes back to his roots, creating artwork featuring nature.
“If I don’t paint the land itself, usually I’m obsessed with painting clouds in the sky, which obviously growing up in such a place … I will never forget this impression of open air,” he said.
“So although my work these days goes into more intense territory, maybe what it means to be a human, what it is to see … it really comes back to these impressions that I had in childhood.
“I probably consider them opposite poles of my work, but they are both genuinely me.”
While also studying architecture, Mr Sesto maintained his passion to become an artist, and has had exhibitions across Melbourne.
“Even after I graduated architecture from the University of Queensland in 2015, I was 20 years old [and] straight away I just wanted to be a painter again,” he said.
“I pretty much have been focused on that task and succeeding at being a painter since that age, it’s been a natural inclination, like it wasn’t accidental.
“It’s kind of like medication or feels like taking a breath of life, it’s a very central activity for me.”
To view more of Mr Sesto’s artwork, people can visit his Instagram page @eric_sesto.