I was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, and live there now.
All my life I have been fascinated by wild nature. Forest, lakes, rivers – that was a home for my soul. I started painting because my feelings about nature needed to be expressed. So I began with the landscapes.
Hunting mushrooms has always been my passion and the main reason to spend days in the woods. People in Russia hunt them for food; I hunted them for their beauty. To me they are flowers of the woods. I wanted to save that beauty and to share it with the others. That’s why I started painting them. It was over 35 years ago. I did not know then that it was my first step onto the trail of botanical art.
Today I am a member of ASBA. I have my work in public collections around the world, including the Hunt Institute in Pittsburgh, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the Shirley Sherwood Collection, the Komarov Botanical Institute in St. Petersburg, and in many private collections.
I teach botanical art classes in the United States and in Russia.
I call my watercolors "Portraits of Mushrooms." For these portraits, I select not the most typical but the most pleasant and happy looking individuals. And I paint them life size.
I hope you can recognize on my paintings not only the species of the mushroom but the variety as well. Yet it is much more important for me to show the unique beauty and personality of each mushroom.
Just as human portraits reflect one's personal surroundings, my mushroom portraits are composed with scatterings of elements from their natural environment.
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Contact Alexander Viazmensky at:
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55427, USA
watercolor 12" x 16
© Alexander Viazmensky