Modern Life With a Deep Meaning!

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Ilya Volykhine

Ilya Volykhine

auckland, new zealand — painter

Born in Russia - emigrated to New York City in 1990 & exhibited there before moving to Australia in 2000. Lived/worked in Australia for 8 years. Since 2009 I have called New Zealand home and have no intentions to ever leave. Emerging from behind the iron curtain, my paintings, and works on paper, capture the underlying forces that dominate and determine the conditions of the human psyche. I have been told by my favourite auntie that as a 2-year-old kid I sat on the pavement outside my parent’s house in Russia with my feet in the gutter digging with a broken stick. I liked scraping and scratching at the dirt, she said I found it soothing. Aged 5, I was dragged kicking and screaming into school. I didn’t like being there. The place was petty, cold, and heartless. The only times I felt at all within myself was when we had morning play or did the painting. We made pictures with powder paints; mixing the coloгкы soothed me. This is what I’ve kept on doing (and have always protected within myself ) even when I was working shuffling asphalt in our small town before I left for America. Art has always been what I go to. This uncompromising streak is how I have aligned myself with the universe: It is very simple and ordinary because it is nothing more than expressing my nature: I’m an artist and doing what I’m meant to be doing: I believe that art can be defined as line and form coming through the hand – the head, and even the heart, somehow have to get out of the way.


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