The Art of the Ukraine – Part 2

Our second dip into some of the greatest art and artists that have come from the Ukraine, in this edition we look at the more contemporary Ukrainian artists most of whom are still alive today. We start our quest to discover the finest painters in Ukraine with Alexander Anufriev the exiled Renaissance painter.

Alexander Anufriev 1940–to date

Anufriev was forced to emigrate to America in 1980 due to political problems with the authorities at the time. His works have been exhibited in the Ukraine, Russia and North America to great acclaim. He was a member of the Odessa School of the Unofficial Art Founders, and his works display strong influences from the great Renaissance painters. He tries to develop in his works what is eternal and to bring the spectre to the full view of the person studying the piece. One of his best works to date has been An Angel with a Cup of Coffee.

Alexander Roitburd 1961–to date

If you study the Self Portrait of Alexander Roitburd you can see that it encapsulates his style and what he is trying to achieve in his art. A member of the South Ukrainian Art School he is one of their postmodernism leading lights. Never far from controversy, Roitburd’s exhibitions draw heavy criticism because of the way his paintings seem to make their subjects rather ugly and revolting to the eye. During his controversial but successful career he has held over 100 solo exhibitions, and his art is held in galleries and private collections all over the world.

Katya Gridneva 1965–to date

Born in the Ukraine, Katya Gridneva studied at the Saint Petersburg Academy of Art. Currently she lives in Britain and works in London with her husband and fellow artist. Incredibly talented, Gridneva works with many styles and creates art in pastels, oil and charcoal. Her favourite subjects are women and often ballet dancers where she captures grace and motion in her work. Her work is mostly recognized in France, America and Germany where it is displayed in many galleries, but her portraits have world recognition as some of the best contemporary art today.

Oleg Shuplyak 1967–to date

Born in Western Ukraine, Shuplyak has been described as a contemporary Salvador Dali, due to his creation of many optical illusions in his work. In essence Shuplyak creates two paintings on one canvas, the second painting is often a portrait of a famous person including Charles Darwin and John Lennon to name just but two. Shuplyak’s paintings are highly technical using great skill, perhaps because he trained as an architect. He is greatly regarded as one of the great illusionists of the current time. Perhaps his greatest works to date are his portrait heads which are interlaced with other famous images of people.

These creative and masterful painters have very different styles and show the wealth of artistic talent that is hailing from the Ukraine today. Nearly all the featured artists are still producing work today and you can see examples of their art hanging in galleries all over the world. They have produced a legacy of their talent that can ever been admired and loved.