Maja Kastelic

Maja Kastelic was raised on a little hill in a small village surrounded by meadows and forests, and had a best friend with the most vivid imagination and the coolest ideas ever. Together, they read books, watched the movie Labyrinth whenever possible, and made up incredible worlds in their heads to play in. There was nothing they couldn’t do. This childlike image of a world full of possibilities and hidden charms still represents the most important source of inspiration for Maja as an artist. 

As a child, Maja was the most passionate and nonpicky book fan you can imagine, and her love for books has persisted. After receiving her BFA in painting in 2006 and her MA in philosophy and visual theory, she was painting, writing theoretical stuff, and working as a fresco retoucher until 2012, when she suddenly quit all of that for books and illustrations. She was awarded for her work at the Slovenian Biennale of Illustration that same year. This was the beginning of two years of work on her wordless picture book, A Boy and a House (Fall 2018), which has won several awards and has been republished in different countries many times since. 

Maja believes strongly in the power of storytelling and the beauty that illustrated books bring to life. Each new project she takes on brings both immense joy and difficulty; she works on each project differently, constantly searching for the most appropriate tools and ways to represent the stories. In spite of the practicality of digital environments, she still uses analog media and likes their alchemy when used together. She adores bookstores and libraries and collects books, of course. Maja tries to do yoga because illustrating involves a lot of not-too-healthy sitting, and she also loves to walk. She lives in Slovenia with her husband, two sons, and a borrowed cat called Mango.

Annick Press books
by Maja Kastelic

Annick Press books
illustrated by Maja Kastelic