Contemporary artist Igor Gusev lives and works in Ukraine’s port city of Odessa. His work presents a conceptual take on classical styles and imagery of paint. He challenges a viewer’s expectations of the medium, fusing clichés of past and present expression. In this collection of paintings, Gusev demonstrates a traditional understanding of figurative painterly technique and symbolic contemporary abstraction. The artist blends traditional imagery of bourgeois society from within palace walls and enjoying scenes at the coastal promenades with a disruptive glitch of block color paint stripes. Gusev appears to have dragged elements of his subjects to the edge of the canvas, taking with them a trail of color as if they are shifting through dimensions. Through this, Gusev distorts the notion of ‘narrative’ portrayed in the classical paintings he is parodying, which prompts the idea that what lies on the canvas really is just paint.
All images © Igor Gusev