Imagine colorful non-figurative paintings that look like aurora borealis, or a play of light on crystals. How much would you pay for that? Some well-off Ukrainians are ready to dole out $50,000 for the works of Galina Moskvitina, a Kyiv artist who likes to think she does not need the money.
Moskvitina’s third exhibition in the capital was briefly on in December. The opening was chic, with plenty of expensive treats.
After being a graphic artist for most of her professional life, three years ago the 48-year-old Moskvitina changed her preferences “for no special reason.”
Igor Kondratiev, a partner of Arcane Art Foundation that promotes Moskvitina, says she has sold more than 40 paintings in the new stage of her career. Most of them, however, were custom made, or “individual, ” as Kondratiev calls them.
The artist says as soon as she started painting on commission, she has had a queue of customers. In three years, she has done more than 30.
Moskvitina has a special name for her colorful paintings. She calls them “lightangs”, a word made up of “light” and “anchor.” Some of them capture something remotely reminiscent of human shapes and, others bring to mind images of Asian religious cults. Some paintings are accompanied with brief lines about “highest level of awakened consciousness,” Cosmos and Buddha.
Moskvitina is a mysterious person. She does not show up at her exhibition openings and refuses to speak in public. She finds her inspiration in India, where she spends nearly half of her time. Meanwhile, her managers are trying to promote her internationally. And they are succeeding.
In June, one of Moskvitina’s paintings was sold by Bonhams auction house for about $15,000. Then, on Dec. 1, the painting called “Ray of Creation” was sold by McDougall’s auction house for about $10,000, up from the starting price of about $7,500.
Kondtratiev said that because the awareness of Moskvitina is still low, he has to pitch her pictures by himself.
“The auction house knows best what has a chance to sell, especially when it’s a new artist’s work, and it requested several paintings of a certain size. We sent those, and the auction house representatives chose one. Then they promoted it through catalogues, and finally it was sold,” says Kondratiev.
He says that international auctions are not the most profitable way for his client to sell her pieces. Apparently, Ukrainians are willing to pay a lot for her “meditative” paintings — as much as $50,000.
But Moskvitina does not appear motivated by commercial success. She can easily pay her bills just being an artist. “My personal needs are so small,” she says.
Moskvitina’s works can be seen at artist’s website at www.galynamoskvitina.com
Kyiv Post staff writer Olga Rudenko can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org