Yevgeni Shchukin was born in Odessa, a cosmopolitan port on the Black Sea. His mother was a ballerina and dance teacher who instructed her son in ballet until a bout of pneumonia cut his dance career short at age 14. Shchukin found a new form of expression in painting. Exposed from a young age to all forms of art, Shchukin began professional studies at the Designer’s Studio at the Odessa Folk Art Institute.
Two years of mandatory military service in Afghanistan left him with empathy for human suffering and lends a subtle sadness in his imagery. Often balanced with a sense of elation and even joy, Shchukin’s aesthetic shows a projected utopia realized only through the contemplative imagination of an artist who has seen otherwise. With shimmering color, flowing forms, and an entrancing element of mystery and charm, Shchukin’s oil paintings convey ancient and timeless tales through a contemporary vision.
Upon returning home from military service, the artist earned a diploma from the Odessa Theatre and Fine Arts College, where his studies included lighting and costume design. He then moved to St. Petersburg to work at the Kirov Ballet Theatre but soon abandoned the theater in favor of the painting’s solitude. His theatrical training in lighting, color, costume design and dramatic presentation influence his artistic compositions while his later endeavors included designing propaganda material for the State. Shchukin consistently pursued his personal development in painting, combining Old Masters techniques with a leaned worldview and intuitive nature. He’s a member of the International Association of Artists and has had exhibitions in Great Britain, France, Israel, the United States, and Moscow. Shchukin’s paintings are highly sought after by his numerous collectors yet his technique allows him to produce no more than a dozen works a year.
Originals and high-quality, limited-edition, prints are available from Art of Russia Gallery.
Some of Yevgeni Shchukin’s early non-conformist work can be seen in this recently uncovered video from the soviet era. Among them is the five panel, Maltese Cross, which has been on display at Art of Russia Gallery. A selection of paintings available at Art of Russia Gallery can be seen on the gallery facebook page.