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With great excitement I present to you my latest project. It began in October 2007 when my friend Erin SinClair suggested using her workshop while she traveled across Europe. She said to me, "Elena, why don't you use my workshop while I'm away? I know you like the view of the lake and you could sit by the window, make coffee and compose your stories." That chance sounded too good to pass up, so I took it. I didn't end up doing any writing at all, but I did conceive one thing: the web art-gallery.

This project consists of several parts. The first is non-commercial and consists of my favourite pictures, some of which are well known, others perhaps not so known. This gives me the opportunity to share a bit about me and lets you admire some marvellous work. I've included work that showcases many different art techniques, from oil painting and watercolour, to gouache, pastels, acrylics and mixed media, and will include everything from portraits and landscapes to natural forms, figures and drapery. It's a wonder to be able to showcase this all on the World Wide Web, so far from what I would have imagined as a child!

The second part was the most time-consuming and labour extensive in terms of preparation for me. It's the work of a Russian genius named Nadja Rusheva, who died at the age of 17, after creating over twelve thousand pictures. I fell in love with her pictures back at exhibitions in Russia, due to their cleanliness, unbridled imagination and the wisdom they show; a wisdom significantly beyond her seventeen years. Legend has it that on the day of Nadja’s funeral, the widow of famous Russian writer, Michael Bulgakov, had called her parents with a request to illustrate the first edition of the great philosophic novel, "The Master and Margarita".
I decided to convert Nadja's pictures to a digital format, print them out and to arrange an exhibition in Toronto, where I now live and work. Talented Russian artist Sasha Molibog will manage the virtual art gallery part of this project. Depending on the amount of pictures to be transferred to digital format, I shall announce the date and location of the exhibition at a later time.

Many thanks to Nadja’s mother, Natalja Ajikmaa-Rusheva, for her support this project. With all my heart I wish to Natalja Ajikmaa-Rusheva good health.
I also to thank Chimiza Lamajaa. Chimiza is the journalist who has worked on Nadja Rusheva’s story for more than seven years. She shared her materials with me. In April 2008 Chimiza will give birth to a baby. In Canada we always congratulate the future parents on such grandiose events. I wish you a healthy child, Chimiza.
And certainly the biggest thanks goes to the director of Nadja Rusheva’s school museum, Natalia Usenko. Without her methodical help, the idea would have remained only an idea.

The third part I call "Imaginations in Beardsley’s Theme”. This was the idea of Erin SinClair, whom I met while she was gallery curator for American artist Paul Hunter. Erin is a very talented artist whose prevalent themes draw inspiration from the Moon (she has the Moon in silver, gold, copper and bronze, all on not grounded canvas) and that of the horse (she makes very impressive horses). I enjoy her compositions of figures and letters in a collage style, but my favourite piece is a Mermaid she constructed from the bumper of an old car, that really should be in the Louvre (but is instead showcased in her bathroom or kitchen depending on her mood). Following Erin’s style, I wish to paint Beardsley’s drawings in the colours of the rainbow: red, orange, green, blue, indigo, violet and yellow. I would like to make a compilation of Beardsley’s drawings opposite artists like Klimt or Kirhner. I think that the effect will be striking. If anyone has any other ideas, please feel free to bring them to the web art gallery.

For the fourth part of the project I invite all artists and graphic designers to submit their works to my gallery. You can send the digital image og your work with a brief message. Visitors to the gallery can admire and even purchase your art. Modern art is as interesting as the art on sale at Sotherby’s or Christy’s auction houses. Fresh ideas are always in demand.

The design of the project is executed by Andrey Dmitriev.


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