November 2019 Edition

Artist Focus

Leonid Plekhanov

Russian artist Leonid Plekhanov blends traditional and contemporary techniques.

Leonid Plekhanov is an award-winning Russian artist who combines a traditional and academic Russian art school background with contemporary techniques, while pursuing a specific vision of the role of art and artist. “I am standing for the idea that [the] artist is responsible for how his art affects the viewer,” he says. “But you never can hide yourself in the painting—you are always there, between the brushstrokes, whether you want this or not. Therefore, my belief is that one must develop [themselves] as a person first, if he/she wants to develop as an artist.”

Following this approach, Plekhanov never stops learning and always treats any new activity as a professional challenge. He studied academic art at Imperial Academy of Arts and old Russian art in iconography school. Before that Plekhanov received a Master of Science degree in applied physics and mathematics. He runs an innovative high-tech company that he co-founded several years ago. “Sometimes I can find time to play piano too—I’ve play piano since childhood,” he says.Worlds of Childhood,  oil on canvas, 35½ x 35½"

According to Plekhanov, such a wide background gives him freedom to think big and implement his artistic ideas with passion and energy. He explains, “I can paint 10 to 14 hours a day with no breaks, as I am always completely obsessed by the process, until it is done.”

His art is about capturing beauty of the human being and human forms in connection with nature. “Things which surround us directly affect the way of thinking and living,” Plekhanov concludes. “I believe in the better future for all of us, and my art is my way to contribute to it.”Eden,  oil on canvas, 27½ x 55"

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