“I am a painter, born in Kyiv, Ukraine. I am a painter despite the circumstances that were against it.”
Tatiana An: A Mathematical Prodigy Turned Painter
Tatiana An‘s journey into the art world is a fascinating tale of defiance and dedication. Born in Kyiv, Ukraine, she exhibited an early flair for mathematics, which her parents hoped would define her career. An mathematical prodigy by any standard, she mastered complex calculations effortlessly, earning acclaim in her academic circles. Her father, a man of remarkable intellect and a voracious reader, influenced the intellectual ambiance of their home, which housed nearly 10,000 books. This environment, while academically enriching, seemed to steer her away from her artistic inclinations.
However, An’s passion for art was unyielding. At the tender age of 5, her artistic journey began with a simple drawing in kindergarten. This early expression of creativity was a glimpse into her future, though obscured by her parents’ aspirations for her in science. Despite her academic prowess in mathematics and geometry, An yearned for a life in art. At 14, she made a bold move that would set the course of her life: she entered an art college. This decision, while bringing her closer to her dream, created a rift between her and her father, who ceased communication with her for 12 years. This period marked the beginning of her true pursuit of art, undeterred by familial opposition.
The Path of Perseverance and Discovery
Tatiana An’s artistic odyssey took her through various stages of struggle and discovery. After her initial foray into the art world through college, she further honed her skills at the Kyiv Academy of Art and Architecture. Parallel to her academic pursuits, An delved into the practical world of art, working as an assistant production designer in cinema and theater. This multidisciplinary experience enriched her artistic perspective, contributing to the depth and diversity of her work.
The late 90s brought a significant challenge; a national crisis in Ukraine forced An to seek financial stability abroad. She moved to Greece, where she spent a decade painting portraits on the street. This period, while challenging, was a testament to her resilience and dedication to her craft. It was not until 2009 that An’s circumstances took a favorable turn. Relocating to the Netherlands, she finally acquired her own studio, a sanctuary where she could develop her unique style. Despite her love for her work, self-doubt lingered, leaving her uncertain about the public reception of her paintings. However, her perseverance paid off in 2016 when she participated in the Skopje Drawing Biennale, earning immediate recognition and setting her on an unstoppable artistic trajectory.
Tatiana An: Unveiling Ultra Modernity Through Art
Tatiana An’s artistic style, which she aptly terms “ultra modern,” is a captivating blend of Art Nouveau influences and her unique perception of the world. Her work is characterized by a lack of straight lines, echoing her belief that the world is a living entity, constantly in motion, breathing, and pulsating. This philosophical approach to art results in creations where forms and figures seamlessly flow into each other, reminiscent of water meandering through a stream. An’s paintings, therefore, are not just visual experiences but also convey a sense of the dynamic nature of life itself.
Her fascination with light plays a significant role in her artistic process. An strives to capture the ethereal quality of sunlight filtering through leaves and branches, focusing on the interplay of light and shadow. In her pursuit to paint only light, she allows the contours in her paintings to fade, aiming to retain the ‘living vibration of Light.’ This unique approach sets her work apart, making her paintings not just visual representations but also explorations of the elemental forces of nature. The fluidity and flexibility inherent in her style are a testament to her vision of a world in constant motion, where the conventional boundaries of form and structure dissolve into a harmonious blend of color and light.
A Sanctuary of Creativity: An’s Artistic Haven
For Tatiana An, her studio is more than just a workspace; it’s a haven of creativity where her artistic visions come to life. Spacious and well-equipped, her studio houses everything she needs for her painting endeavors. The presence of multiple easels allows her to work on several paintings simultaneously, a method she prefers to maintain her creative flow. While one painting dries, she seamlessly shifts her focus to another, ensuring a continuous and productive artistic process. This setup not only facilitates her work but also reflects her dynamic approach to art, where multiple ideas coexist and evolve together.
Distractions, a common challenge for many artists, are handled uniquely by An. Instead of viewing them as interruptions, she uses these moments to continue her creative process internally, mentally conceptualizing and refining her ideas. This approach not only helps her maintain her focus but also enhances the depth and complexity of her work. It’s a testament to her dedication and passion for art, where even the moments away from the canvas contribute to the evolution of her artistic vision. An’s studio, with its practical setup and her philosophical approach to distractions, is a microcosm of her artistic journey — a blend of preparation, adaptability, and unyielding commitment to her craft.