As a result of my early training in the Russian academic tradition, coupled with my studies in an American University's Art Department, my studio practice and work now attempt to blend elements of Realism from my formal training with contemporary principles and aesthetic, conceptual theories that I have learned while studying in the U.S.
From the latter -- one might say from Modernism and beyond -- I have embraced more formal elements, compositional freedom, a love of complex surface qualities ("painting as paint"), and a realization of a freedom to break rules. However, continuing an attachment to the Russian tradition which formed my early years of becoming an artist, I have a preoccupation with "observed reality": of nature, of the landscape, of structural forms that make up land formations. Travel has become an element that, more recently, has informed my work; with that has come a realization of amazing changes in light, color, texture, atmosphere depending on my encounters with a sense of place. Similarly, my awareness of different cultural characteristics affect what I see and, in the end, to what happens in the studio or on-site. Much of my work -- even if only studies -- is done plain-air. Consequently, if I happen to be living in coastal Maine, lobster harvesting and the people involved inform my work; if I am in southern Spain, the wheat fields with their significant change in color, light, and atmosphere inspire me.
When my work involves portraiture, as it sometimes does, I seek to portray the character of the sitter, defined as I see it, by the person's life and my awareness of her/his internal psychological thoughts and experience; all of this related to the sitter's life, environment, and culture. The resulting painting, through it's surface, coloration and mood is intended to convey that to its viewer.
By way of conclusion, in all of my work, I strive for complexity: of the subject being painted, of my own response to that subject translated into "painting as paint", of blending observational reality with touch and mark and color of my brush (what the Anglo-Canadian artist Tony Scherman refers to as "notational painting"). Collectively, this leads to a labor-intensive methodology in my studio practice.