Igor Medvedev (1931–)
In the paintings of acclaimed California artist Igor Medvedev, the viewer is drawn into a world dominated by serene beauty, balance and order. Strong clean forms and dramatic use of light and shadow are the hallmark of his warm, expressive style. The light of the Mediterranean, its ambience and the sense of history found there is what inspires him. Rapidly disappearing towns and villages signal a loss of dialogue with the past and it is with this sense of urgency that Medvedev seeks to document his vision. His theme is ecology and the preservation of ancient cities. He travels extensively in Greece, Spain, Morocco and Turkey and many of the places he paints are thousands of years old. He has found them destroyed by development and tourism. He said he has often heard the sound of bulldozing even as he is still painting. His richly textured surfaces are a surprise to the viewer and convey a sense of subtle balance and color. His unique compositions and subtle use of shadow, line and form evoke a timeless quality of images somehow familiar to us even though we may have never seen them before. In Medvedev’s art the viewer finds an astonishing balance of rigorous formal and technical brilliance, combined with exceptional mood, message and poignancy.
Medvedev is equally adept at the creation of original serigraphs, a medium he has mastered that is well suited to the interpretation of his imagery into graphic form. He spends countless hours diligently working with the technical assistants from the serigraphic ateliers to achieve a level seldom reached in the serigraphic medium. In 2002, the catalog raisonne of Medvedev’s serigraphs was published by Park West Gallery, with an introduction by Dr. Anthony Janson, co-author of the most widely read art history textbook, The Janson History of Art.