A budding artist of Russian roots sets foot on Malaysian soil, calls it home now, and is ready to show us how diversity in experience and skills is such a treasure to have. Her works are montages of her interests in mythology and folklore, the messages and stories carried through centuries, presented through her unique artistic style which culminates from her strong graphic design background and talent in fine arts.
Following a 3 months residency with the sembilan Art Residency Program, Elena will be exhibiting a series of works at the joint exhibition Unborn x Reborn. Here, she takes some time to share with us some personal thoughts about herself, and her ambitions.
Side note: We witnessed someone asking her “will you be a famous artist some day?” and she replies “Of course!” . Read on about this up and coming artist we are privileged to have met in the early 2015.
What should we know about you (that is not in your artist profile already) ?
I have a fat lazy cat… He is both my inspiration and demotivation since he is basically doing nothing except of eating and sleeping the whole day.
Why and how did art become a part of your life?
…I proclaimed that I would be an artist in the age of four but didn’t really believe that I will. It was a time when I was too inspired by my relatives – I wanted to follow mainstream. My father’s great talent is woodworking, he can create anything. I also remember he drew a bit as well. My mother has excellent taste and her main hobby is knitting. (My) God father is a professional artist and his wife is an amazing professional ballroom dancer. Grandmas can sew and sing very well, aunty is the best embroidery master I know, uncle is a guitarist. They all had some day professions too, but it didn’t look as impressive.
We came here initially for my husband’s work contract in telecommunications but we liked it so much here that we decided to stay. Malaysia is an awesome place offering excellent living conditions at costs level lower than in our home-country. At the same time it offers a unique mixture of a number of different cultures – as if it was the whole Asia just in one city like KL!
Finally, Malaysia is also perfect to be based in and travel around the Region to see all the incredible neighbouring countries.
You are a graphic designer as well as an artist – what are your thoughts about being both?
I love it! And I should tell you more…I believe that each of your skill is considered a benefit as long as you can combine them – it will help you to create unique and significant artistic style and build your personal and professional identity.
Where do you find inspiration?
Everywhere. In life itself. In people I meet every day, their stories, and their point of view. In perfection, the order and the chaos of the nature. In Colours! In every small outstanding detail I can notice in normal day life. In my memories and fantasy. In any type of artists and creators and their creations – music, photography, videography, typography, any types of design, dance, theatre, sports, and literature of course. My favourite books are fairy tales, legends, folklore mainly from any culture, south-eastern especially.
What can we look forward to from Elena Kravchenko?
Deepavali is coming, so I am planning a series of illustrations about the main Indian Gods. I am very excited about this project.
What is the biggest myth about Russians and is it true?
That we have bears walking on the streets of Russian cities that are covered with snow all year round and people are so tough they wash their faces with soap without closing their eyes! A country of tough men with cold hearts and long beards! Women all blond, tall and pretty! And like all myths of course it is all true.
What would you advise or like to share with Art enthusiasts and art collectors?
Don’t be afraid to go for any new passion you might have, taking up as many occupations and styles you want – it is never time wasted even if you give up some of it in future. Go for it, explore, develop your new skills, and then combine your different knowledge into something new, awesome and beautiful. Also collaborate with others – you can learn so much from other artists. And rely on practical people – they will help you to do arts while taking care of the rest in your life.
Unborn x Reborn will be exhibiting from 31st October to 8th November 2015 at Awegallery (21 Jalan 20/13, Taman Paramount, Petaling Jaya)
For more information about the sembilan Art Residency Program, please visit http://www.sembilan.com.my.
Follow Elena on:
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/last.dandelion
- Instagram: https://instagram.com/last.dandelion/