Some of the decaying, run-down buildings are so expressive in human wear and tear and so saturated with history that they look like a cut through time. I have always been impressed with the sad beauty of those places and began to incorporate these impressions into my art, working in a context of my current main theme: the interplay and overlapping of architectural elements and landscape. Lyricism of a landscape with its open horizon is opposed to a logical structure of an interior. To communicate the juxtaposition of rough daily reality and idyllic (and idealized) landscape, I often use the differences in luminosity and textures: coarse, expressionistic treatment of the interior is played against smooth, flowing paint in a landscape fragment. 

I intend to provoke the viewers into contemplating ever widening gap between man-made world and eternal world of nature that we so often are unable to protect. Gazing through the openings into the “undiscovered country from whose bourne no traveler returns” (Hamlet), a viewer is invited to reflect on our notion of reality. Frame like compositions evoke Platonic myth in which dwellers of the cave are striving to get a glimpse of the outside world.

Exploration of the form of “pure” landscape is an important part of my vision. In these pieces I dissolve duality and tension of “here” and “there.” Through luminosity of endless unrolling space I try to invite viewers to travel to the realm of peace and balance. In these paintings sand mixed with oils becomes a symbolic gesture of reconciliation between the world of art and the world of nature.

Irena Kononova


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