Expect Only The Best
Having already had a little insight into my way of seeing the world, I am sure you will know that the inspiration comes to me in the noblest of forms.
What moves my soul is what ultimately moves me, and this is not related to anything I studied as a discipline, but rather a study of self and a curious road of deep self-exploration, self-study, and a discovery of many magical manifestations that keep unfolding in my experience. I will talk about my inspiration in the specific context of the art and the aesthetics – as they are to me - the creation and appreciation of beauty. I have already mentioned in post 1 my story of becoming an aquarelle painter, having had an appreciation for fine art my entire life. To me, art and life are intertwined. They are one in every sense of the word. Introducing Russian Realist Painters In a nutshell, when something speaks to me on a deeper level – that is my biggest inspiration. And for so many reasons Russian realist painters have always evoked the deepest feeling of freedom, space, attention to detail, the enormity of scale, and absolute finesse in portraying life as they saw it – that my imagination was captured forever, and I will forevermore consider them my number one inspiration and aspiration, too. Their talent and legacy are so palpable to me, that my heart and my mind fill with awe whenever I stand in front of a single one, or a collection of these works in a gallery. These moments are also precious as they connect me with some great people whose souls are inseparable from mine. Out of a thousand exhibitions, there are two that will forever stand out in my mind as favourites, because of the incredibly real, honest, soul liberating and uplifting feeling they produced inside me. One of those exhibitions I saw in Belgrade as a young person, in my mid-high teen years, and the other one I saw in the summer of 2005 in London. Both exhibitions featured amazing works of Russian realist painters from the age of Tolstoy, to name but a few: Ivan Ivanovich Shishkin (1832-1898), Ilya Yefimovich Repin (1844-1930), Lev Lvovich Kamenev (1834-1886), Isaac Ilyich Levitan (1860-1900), Vasily Dmitrievich Polenov (1844-1927), Arkhip Ivanovich Kuinji (1842 - 1910). The Impact It’s almost impossible to separate them, but somehow Ivan Ivanovich Shishkin manages to separate himself in my heart because of this painting and the feeling it gave me in the moments I stood in front of it. I will never forget that hot August day, around midday, when even London gets unbearably dry. Deep inside the National Gallery we walk through the quiet rooms and marvel at the works of Tolstoy and Tchaikovsky’s contemporaries - but this group of artists is much less widely known than the writer and the composer. Don’t know why, because their works equal in greatness. I was familiar with the painting titled ‘In the North’ as it was used in promotional material by the gallery to announce the exhibition. But there was no way I was prepared for the effect it will have on me until this day. From the hot pavement, walking into the quiet and dark space of the gallery where only the paintings were lit, I walk through the double door and to my left, I am greeted with this painting. As I look at it, I begin to feel transported into the moonlit landscape, and I am beginning to shiver from the cold – I am actually starting to feel cold the longer I study its details - as if I am standing right there, in the most beautiful and magical winter night you can imagine…. Their Legacy – Our Gift Shishkin and the other artists didn’t just catch the essence of the Russian landscape. Inside their art is the soul of their people, pure and vast, isolated and hauntingly beautiful. All the sensibility of deep feeling capturing rodina (the Russian name for ‘motherland’) of that time and immortalising it in their art, whichever form that took. To the honest Russian soul, their relationship with nature had everything to do with their integrity. And in these paintings, you can just see how honest and pure that soul was. I hope I have managed to describe how much the subject, and even the scale of their works, are nothing short of monumental in spiritual sense, which is exactly what I find that has moved my soul the most. If you ever have a chance, go look at these amazing pieces of art in real life. You will be astonished, my friend.