What would you say inspires you most?

“My work has been described as symphonic, which I find poignant. I am currently pursuing this connection to music in even greater depth. I think of art as a language, and the language of music is especially interesting. I treat paintbrushes the same way a pianist or cellist would use their tools to trim sound.  

I am also exploring the term ‘unfinished’ in the visual arts. There are works left incomplete and works using a non finito—intentionally unfinished— aesthetic that embraces the unresolved. Artists like Cézanne, and modern artists Jackson Pollock and Robert Rauschenberg, have taken the unfinished in entirely new directions, blurring the distinction between making and un-making, extending the boundaries of art, and inviting the viewers to make own interpretations. 

Finally, I am inspired by the looser norms of what constitutes 'good' art. The art world has become more inclusive, which leaves room for a much wider variety. I don’t necessarily agree with or like everything out there, but I appreciate that there is room for it. This gives me the courage to deliver an unpolished, authentic expression of my inner self to an audience when I feel it’s ready.”

What themes do you pursue? Is there an underlying message in your work?

“In my art, I draw from historical and cultural imagery to create a visual map of identity—an identity that mingles Eastern and Western beauty ideals and mythologies. Tensions between the varying cultures emerge in the juxtaposition of Danish and Russian worlds, as well as in the celebration and antagonization of the Eastern and Western ideas of beauty and cartoons. Moments are depicted to punctuate the human drama in order to clarify our existence and to find poetic meaning in everyday life.

As a result of growing up in the former Soviet Union, freedom and its expressions have been a consistent theme and impact in my life as an artist. Art has, through many years, been the only messenger and translator of my personal experience in a way that would accurately convey what words couldn’t capture.”