Maria is a Ukrainian born artist and a classical musician. She grew up in Afghanistan and in Russia and her first experience of painting was attending an art studio in Kabul where she leant from a Belorussian teacher. After moving to Moscow at the age of 8 she enjoyed being a pupil of an architectural studio for children.
At the age of 12 she went to the Moscow Art School number 1 for children and continued at the Moscow Academic Art College after her A-level equivalents, where she studied Fine Art and teaching.
At College she was especially moved by studying icons in the art history lessons an her training was steeped in the 19th century Russian Art Tradition which was based on Christian subjects and ideals.
At College Maria came across many knowledgeable masters of painting technology, anatomy, drawing and painting such as Vladimir Pastukhov, Sergei Struchkov and Alexander Konyagin. Her favourite genre of painting was Realism and Impressionism.
After moving to the UK in 1997 Maria carried on painting ( mainly portraits) as well as teaching art to small groups of children and tutoring. She carried on painting and performing in concerts and in operas after having children herself and has always found inspiration first of all in people’s faces, and in nature, In flower still-lives, and in seascapes.
One of her favourite subjects during the College years had been ballet and she went back to that theme more than once. Maria has been exhibiting most years with other artists, in the mixed exhibitions at The Chelsea Art Fair and Parallax Art Fair, in the RWA, with the Royal Society of Portrait Painters, Bath Society of Artists and lately in the Orthodox Festival of the Parish of St John of Kronstadt in Bath, where she also worships.
Being very busy in the church life and with the children as well as being in demand as a recital artist and an oratorio soloist meant that the interest in the iconography didn’t get a chance to develop earlier in life as Maria would have loved it to, and it is only now that the children have grown up and a proper studio became available at home she is able to dedicate more time to studying and painting icons. It is as if every other experience in art has been leading her to this point.
Writing icons is something Maria wants to dedicate herself to and she is working in this direction.