Metropolitan Magazine November 2019

Page 100

artform

QUICKFIRE ARTIST SPOTLIGHT SERIES

Artist Veronica Smirnoff VENICE AND MYSTICAL WATER DREAMS

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ward winning British artist Veronica Smirnoff, born in Russia, captivates audiences with her often ethereal art, reminding audiences of the delicate balance with which we live concerning water, and what it represents in dreams and the conscious and unconscious mind. She says, “water often equals metamorphosis, a force for good, the image of time.” Smirnoff is known for her paintings in egg tempera, made by mixing pigments from ground semi-precious stones mixed with wine and egg yolk. Suggestive of pre-renaissance and icon painting, folklore and Asian tradition, her paintings are constructed with traditional elements - the fragility of gesso and solidity of wood. Smirnoff’s humanitarian spirit has led her to help solve the plight of Venice, a ‘sinking’ city. She has exhibited in Moscow, Paris, Berlin, New York and London.

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BY RACHEL VANCELET TE For years it has been known the beautiful, historic city of Venice, Italy is sinking, and with new scientific studies revealing the extreme and alarming rising water level in 2019, it is raising major concerns globally. Recent reports also state that Venice potentially may completely sink by the year 2100, meaning this important Italian’s capital future is in great danger. Water rising is only part of the problem as the city itself is both sinking and tilting! The breaking news spawned international efforts causing non-profits and art organizations to create an emergency action – “Save Venice.” Deeply involved artist Veronica Smirnoff is part of the group exhibition titled “Heat: Create the Environment You Want to Live In,” curated by Sveva Manfredi Zavaglia, Maria Abramenko with the cultural advisor Ekaterina Luki. The exhibition shines a spotlight on what Venetians call “Acqua Alta” and the current water crisis. The

“Acqua Alta” event happens in winter months each year between November and March when water levels create terrible flooding conditions, particularly at high tide when evacuations are commonplace. The group exhibition “Heat” debuting at the 77th Venice Biennale has provided. Veronica’s voice and new narrative will help to continue the conversation about changing global environments and hopefully save this beautiful, historic city! QUICKFIRE INTERVIEW: VERONICA SMIRNOFF Can you speak about your current exhibition “HEAT: Create the Environment You Want to Live In” and how your artworks were selected and exhibited for the project? The curatorial statement refers “to raising awareness for global warming” and this mission lays at the heart of this curatorial project. As an artist reacting to the crisis, can you speak to the


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