Interview: Margarita Felis
Luca Curci talks with Margarita Felis during MIXING IDENTITIES, the third appointment of CANVAS International Art Fair, and during ALCHEMIC BODY 2021, at THE LINE Contemporary Art Space.
Margarita Felis was born in 1966 in Smolensk, Russia. In 1983 she moved to Saint Petersburg. Between 1986 and 1989, she studied at the College of Culture in St. Petersburg, and then worked in the field of web design for 10 years up to 2002, and simultaneously studied at evening drawing classes of Repin’s Academy of Fine Arts. From 2007 to 2013 she studied at the Academy of Fine Arts named after Repin, in the painting faculty, where she graduated with a diploma “Paul Gauguin” triptych. Since that time, she works as a free artist. She had many groups and seven solo exhibitions, Russian and international. Some of her works belong to museums and art collections, and she also participated in a few international art residences in Europe and the USA.
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
Margarita Felis – It is what I live for. It may sound too pompously, but I don’t live outside of it. Everything that I do, except for sport, rest, and travelling, is dedicated eventually to art. I do it all the time and I always think of it.
LC – What’s your background? What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
MF – Art always attracted me. Although in the beginning, it was not consciously. I tried to get an education in another area and worked as a computer designer. I liked to go to art museums and exhibitions. Then I decided to attend the evening drawing classes of the Academy of Fine Arts for working people and it was the beginning. I understood that I can draw well. I wanted to make it become my profession. Then I was accepted to study at the Academy and it took six years. During the last years of studying, I was fascinated by the art of Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin. I understood that they give me the direction which I want to continue.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
MF – Everywhere in life and surrounding people. Ideas come to me constantly. I change kinds of activity if I got tired. For example, if I painted on a big project for some time, I can go to a studio to paint from models, or I can sculpt.
LC – What is the most challenging part about creating your artworks?
MF – Despite we live in the epoch when it seems that everything was already invented in art, I still try to find my own way. To be sincere and to find something new, which only I can create.
LC – Are your artworks focused on a specific theme?
MF – It depends on the circumstances. If I’m travelling, I can be inspired by new environments, and landscapes. But mostly I like to paint people. Portraits and nudes. The school which I passed is based on nude drawing so it is a high level to draw people for us. That’s why many of my pictures include nudes and I express my ideas through them. I rarely take actual, temporary subjects, I prefer metaphors, generalizing of something eternal. I think my way in contemporary art was linked with Old Masters’ principles.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the festival?
MF – I think it is an interesting idea to combine different kinds of art in one space and it looks nice.
LC – What is the message linked to the artwork you have shown in this exhibition? How is it connected to the theme of the entire festival?
MF – Actually, I have sent the exact works which were asked for. I don’t know why they were chosen.
LC – What is your idea about ITSLIQUID GROUP?
MF – It is great that artists from different countries have the opportunity to show their art together, I am grateful for it.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?
MF – It was very nice, thank you again.
LC – What are your suggestions about our services? Is there something more we can provide to artists?
MF – I don’t have any suggestions yet.