Artist statement

 

The main subject I work with is the transformation of images, concepts, ideas, forms and meanings in the consciousness and unconscious of an individual whose thinking is qualitatively and fundamentally different from the generally accepted standards and norms.

I explore the influence of my mental characteristics on understanding processes such as art, creativity, and the search for meaning.

What is reality? What is a dream? What is thought? What is everything else and how do I conscious that?

I was 19 when I did my first artwork with a deliberate intention to create things. At that time, I made about 150 paintings and drawings, working unsystematically in fits and starts. But the process did not move any further. I just could not imagine that art might be person’s lifework. And then I turned my steps  towards the dark side: drug addiction and crime.

I spent about 10 years making money from financial fraud, swindling banks and large corporations. I am ashamed, but I don’t want to keep it to myself. I have made some conclusions and realized my mistakes. This was my life path and my experience which I work throug in my paintings. Different events, incidents and situations are reflected in my artwork.

At the time, art was only an occasional thing in my life. But eventually, all things come to an end. In 2018, I started my drug rehab program. In 2019, I was admitted to psychiatric hospital for compulsory treatment by court decision for my crimes.

While serving my time in psychiatric hospital I started painting again. And that was the moment I realized I wanted to be an artist.

I was dismissed 14 months later by the court decision. I spent all my money on organizing a studio and started my work. In the middle of 2021, I rebooted my artistic vision.

So now the process goes like this. I make a sketch on my computer. Then cut a pattern out of self-adhesive tape on a plotter, then make final image with aerosol paints on a canvas previously toned with acrylic by hand.

This technique appeared partly because of my illness. I suffer from tremor and this is why I can’t put straight lines even in big details when I work with a brush. Working with spray paint leaves some space to chance and inaccuracy. The paint covers the pattern and sometimes also the areas around it.  It’s my deliberate decision. I like the idea that this makes the painting even more unique and you can’t create another one like this.

Images and plots of my art follow the concept that reflects my life with schizophrenia. The main character of my art is the Rock’n’roller, the man with a top hat and a bow tie. He is a projection of a man with mental diagnosis into his subconsciousness. This subconsciousness is pictured as the City with eternal night and no stars in the sky.

Some visionary legend says that the day will come when the Star will rise above the City and show the Rock’n’roller the way towards the real world. The Star is a metaphor for recovery and it may never actually arise.

Other characters also live in the City. I call them avatars. These are creatures that personify different symptoms of mental ilness and other things that affect my mental state.

Unfortunatelly, my illness does not leave me. I spend plenty of energy struggling my symptoms and it’s very little left for the creative process. But I believe we all get as much as we can handle. So I continue my work.

It is also important for me to fulfil myself as an artist to show other people with mental diagnosis that you can live and reach your goals despite your illness. I know we can make it.

Biography

October 11, 1988 - Born as a human. 

 

2003 - I begin to suspect that either something is wrong with me, or something is wrong with the world around me. 

 

2007 - the first psychosis. First hospitalization. Schizotypal disorder (F21) was diagnosed. I create the first conscious picture. I understand that I'm drawn to fine arts. 

2008 - I Enter the NSPU at the Department of Decorative and applied arts in the specialty of art. 

 

2009 - because of prohibitions to work, to create as I want, claims that there is no such black color in nature that I use and other restrictions I drop out of school.

 

2010 - Diagnosed with schizophrenia (F20). Assigned 2 permanent degree of invalidity.

2011-2017 - Dark, troubled times of my life. Problems with drugs and the law. Fine art goes to the periphery of my life. I create in fits and starts, haphazardly.

 

2018 - I receive my second course of electrocinvulsive therapy, and also drug and alcohol rehabilitation.

 

2019 - Involuntary commitment by the court decision for the deeds of my past. At the hospital, I experience my rebirth as an artist. My own unique vision, style, and conception of art begin to take shape. I rush into self-education in the field of visual art. Joining Outsiderville Gallery

 

2020 - By the court decision, hospital treatment changes to outpatient treatment. I move to my hometown and equip my studio. I begin to reflect deeply on art, try to go beyond my own event horizons, travel to the outskirts of unconsciousness, explore new techniques. Right now I undergo a depressive phase. It means that almost every action takes hard effort. I work as much as I can. 

2021 - By the court's decision, outpatient compulsory treatment was withdrawn. Restarting the creative vision. I am starting a new round in a deeper concept reflecting my life with mental illness.