My study of painting started in a Moscow comprehensive school with specialization in arts. The school’s teachers had taught me a lot. I am grateful to them immensely. But their education was oriented at realistic art. Abstractionism, suprematism and such were considered as botch, mischief and foolishness.
My understanding of art had begun to change in the Stroganov Academy. At the third year we were introduced to the course “abstract painting”. The tutor was Andrey Volkov (born 1948). Of course, I had regarded the course skeptically, to say the least. My classmates had brought to the classes some slapdash works, and Andrey with a serious air evaluated it. I was looking at that and thinking: “what the hell is happening here?” Then I understood that he does it completely sincerely! I understood that he sincerely admired artworks of M. Rothko and J. Pollock.
It is his sincerity what changed my attitude towards painting. I began to understood that a painting can affect viewers not only when familiar objects are depicted: birch trees, clouds, pots and such. A painting can affect via color combinations and objectless shapes.
Then for the first time I tried myself to express a state by using only colors and shapes, in which one could not recognize familiar objects. It was my first artwork approved by Volkov. Moreover, he got his hand on it by drawing several lines with a ruler. Rulers are a taboo in art schools.
I started to be interested in abstract painting. I started to read books about abstract painters, their own texts. I felt uneasy because I was judging their artworks without knowing anything about their authors, even not trying to understand them.
Now I understand: abstract painting by its means can affect viewer even with more power than realistic. Now for me exist both worlds: realistic painting world and abstract painting world. They can intersect and complement each other.
In this artwork I tried to combine a realistic subject – forest in a dull warm December day – and my revelations made once at the courses in the Stroganov Academy.
I like the borderline state, when the paint runs, spots and lines turn into forest and back.