Entering Tatiana’s large studio is a bit like walking into the Hermitage. A huge room, neat and clean with all easels and art supplies carefully arranged, lays the groundwork for the serene environment that Tatiana prefers. The art on the walls is nothing less than striking – large size Russian icons which belie the fact that they were painted in the current day, deep layers of gold leaf catching the light from the large windows. Then there are the massive still life paintings, perfect in every way down to the tiniest detail. One could easily spend an hour looking at each painting and still find nuances. Which explains why they take so long, some up to a year or more.
Tatiana sat down with us one sunny afternoon and told us about her journey. Note: Her artist statement and list of awards/exhibitions is way too long to include, but you can see it all here.
When did you know you would be an artist?
When I was around 3, my mother took my brother, then 5, to art class. I remember crying loudly because I wanted to go too. I did, and I was the youngest member of the class. I attended art school later, first from 11 to 13, then beginning again at 14 in art college. Each experience was different from the other, so while I did get some basics in the younger years, the years from 14 on solidified my education with concentration on the important basics. The most memorable part of those years was working under the masters; that in-depth knowledge was irreplaceable and set the tone for my future endeavors. I was then, and still am, a lifelong learner. In some ways I look at it as a matter of survival.
Was there anyone in particular that really helped you?
Yes, during the early years there was a teacher who saw my potential and encouraged me to go inside things, to develop my own philosophy. That was invaluable to me.
What is your daily pattern?
I start in the studio at 9 each day, six days a week. I normally go to 5 or 6 with a couple of breaks during the day. I am a serious and focused painter, so I don’t like interruptions. I can paint well into the evening too. Sometimes I play music, but I prefer the quiet time.
Do you teach art classes?
I did previously teach a class to children for two years, but found it so time consuming that I have not repeated that. Maybe in the future I could consider teaching adults. Not for now.
Where would someone never find you?
Definitely not at a rock concert or a shopping mall.
What is your opinion of the future of art?
Society as a whole has lost appreciation for true craftsmanship and traditions. We need to go back to the basics and teach our children from there. I think there is a resurgence lately of realism. As for the commerce side, established dealers don’t really give new artists a chance, and way too much is paid for paintings, in the millions. Art is a culture we need to learn, from the roots up.
Thank you Tatiana.
We are very pleased to have Tatiana join the Arts Guild. Her art is displayed at the Arts Guild at various times throughout the year. More can also be seen at her website: www.timcwethy.com/