Anastasia Venkova presents a series of works Lux & Lumen. The gold leaf is the main material used in them and it expresses two opposite concepts: the materialistic golden dream of luxury and extreme consumption versus the inner light, something metaphysical and spiritual. Made on canvas, each painting requires a laborious work and a long time for accomplishing as it is made of 7-9 layers.
Artist about the collection ‘Lux and Lumen’
‘In ancient times, Lux was the word meaning eternal light that everything is made of. In that definition Lux was always transmitted in art with gold — the most appropriate medium for invisible light. Historically the meaning of gold as well as the meaning of Lux changed from its original definition of light to the new concept of elite consumption (luxury).
There is nothing as opposite between these two homonyms. But in both meanings, Lux has similar influence on people. People thirsted after it as much as they could. The era of consumption came to its vertex in our years, when most of humans reached the possibility to consume as much as they can and to somehow touch the Lux through their consumption. The extremum is now passed. And a hunger of original light comes through the luxurious consumption again. People seek to reach and touch the Lux in its very first original meaning of the eternal light.
By combining different kinds of gold and by enlightening it with Lumen – vivid and visible light, I mean to attract attention to that original ethereal non-material and invisible Lux, that has been hidden under luxury, but essentially is always here.’
Anastasia was born in 1991, Moscow, Russia.
2016 - Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), where her mentors were renowned academic artists and architects,such as Iosif Backshtein, Michail Iampolsky, Petar Chukovic, Christopher Rainbow, Victor Melamed.
2016 - Duckley European Art Center (art residency).
2014 - BA (Hons) at the British Higher School of Art and Design (BHSAD), specialization in Painting and Illustration.
2008 - Art and Architecture school.
Author and Lecturer of the course ‘Illustration and the Ways of Seeing It’, Moscow 2014-2016.
Areas of work
Painting, including oil, watercolor, acrylics and experiments. Graphic, including traditional and digital mediums. Ceramics works and experiments, art objects and installations. Performance, experience in social performances. Video, including acting, recording, editing and postproduction. Creating costumes and masks for films and performances, working with different materials.
2017 Group exhibition ‘Rhythm, Movement, Dynamics’ by Artis Project, Moscow.
2017 Group exhibition ‘Something Went Wrong’ at Gallery on Solianka, Moscow.
2015 Group exhibition ‘Wool‘ Kabakov workshop, Moscow.
2014 Solo exhibition ‘Body of Nature‘ Brusov Ship, Moscow.
2014 Solo exhibition ‘Lines of Connection‘ Sea Inside, Moscow.
2013 Group exhibition ‘252‘ Artplay, Moscow.
Her works are held in private collections in Russia, France, and UK.
‘Being firstly educated as an illustrator I faced the question of what illustration is. Thus, passing through researches and thinking, I found out that it is nothing but embodiment of something, that does not have a body. Therefore, the goal of illustration is to find or to create the most proper body for that. And here I turned from illustrator to artist. I am eternally curious about how people perceive themselves through pieces of art, and what do they really perceive. So, I am working with construction and deconstruction of visual image in human mind.’
‘Being an artist for me means a big responsibility for my messages, and I tend to provide them with everything I do, as I believe that any gesture, made with intention and consciousness is the gesture of art. I go through all my researches and try it on myself as it is the only honest way to transmit my message.’