Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Conversation Pieces, the Hive, Shrewsbury

Conversation Pieces: an Exhibition without Borders

By Gwen Cox
Art International Group is the inspiration of Svetlana Elantseva, originally from Moscow, but now living and working in Shropshire. Its aim is to promote international understanding and co-operation through art; the group, Svetlana herself and Carla Boulton from Shrewsbury, and two artists from Russia, Alexey Gilarov and Vasili Rakov held their first event in Moscow in December 2012 , when they were invited to exhibit as guests by the International Fund of Slavonic Calligraphy and Culture in the Gallery ‘ArdenA, (http://www.slavfond.ru/, http://www.ardena.ru )

Its second venture will be to mount an exhibition here in Shrewsbury, featuring works by the two Shropshire and two Moscow artists. They envisage themselves as holding a ‘conversation’ through art which needs no translation, hence the title of the exhibition, ‘Conversation Pieces’.

The exhibition will take place at the Hive Music and Media Centre in Shrewsbury from 4th February to 2nd March 2013.
Alexey and Vasili live and work in Moscow. Svetlana  and Carla are Shrewsbury - based artists who work in different media : drawing, painting, collages, ceramics , photographs and films. The artists’ works are held in private collections in the UK, USA, Canada, Germany, France, Belgium, Italy and Russia.
Svetlana Elantseva was a member of a team of artists producing Soviet-style art when she worked in Russia, but, since moving to the UK, she has developed her skills in a variety of media and subjects. Her translations of ideas, designs and imagery in her paintings, collages, 3D sculptures, photographs and films are strongly influenced by her Russian roots.

Carla Boulton is the only British-born member of the group, and has always lived and worked in this country, always in the creative industries, having been encouraged by her family to pursue a career doing what she loved.
‘I have always drawn creatures; at times I moved away from documenting thoughts in this way – I painted, made objects, photographed and then came full-circle back to these small drawings – they express best what I mean.
The Morals drawings come straight from my head - the small recurring motif represents a familiar nagging feeling: “Is this OK?” These drawings may or may not look like creatures or people you know, they may touch you or just pass you by, like morals . . ‘

Carla has worked drawing images to be printed on fabrics and has also designed books. Now, ‘with a large family and an unfaltering interest in the new’, Carla splits her time between her graphic design business; making art with children in a primary school; drawing; and studying for an additional career.

Alexey Gilarov develops and makes monumental interior paintings on facades of both public and private buildings, using mural, mosaic, graffito, fresco and stained glass. He studied monumental painting in 2002, but his earlier studies were at the Moscow State Art University and Suricov Art School. He also undertakes landscape design projects and landscape architecture. He has exhibited widely, and has been distinguished with awards: Winner of the Premium Academies, Ferroni, Florence for his contribution to World Art; gold medal winner for National Achievement, International Charity Fund, ‘Patrons of the Century; and he is a corresponding member of the International Academy of Culture and Art. His works are held in museum collections in Rzhev, Toporets, Odessa, Paris, London, Moscow, New York, Luxembourg, Yerevan and Brussels.

Vasili Rakov, a member of the Moscow Union of artists and of the Union of journalists, was born in 1960, and studied decoration and media design at the Press Academy. Now he works as a monumental and decorative artist in architecture and design, with mural, mosaic, fresco and stained glass, and also as a fine artist. He is the creator of many architectural, interior design and landscape projects