16 May 2012

Napoleonic criss-cross

Exquisitely layered with a mixture of innocence, sexuality, beauty and decay, Vania Zouravliov’s illustrations are filled with meticulous, elaborate, copious, lavish, extravagant, generous, baroque, overflowing, flourished (thank you Thesaurus), mucho intricate details.

Napoleon as a Young Boy

Seeing works of Goya, Dürer, Mantegna, and Arcimboldo made me realize that there was a multitude of fascinating worlds out there. Even as a child, I felt that I needed a world of my own. Starting drawing early in life also taught me the importance of discipline and routine. Just like any other exercise, drawing needs to be practised regularly; otherwise, you lose form.

I learned how to draw by closely studying the works of the German masters. The basis of my technique was formed by looking at engravings and drawings by Dürer, Martin Schongauer, Lucas Cranach, and Hans Baldung Grien. At various other points in my life, I’ve also been inspired by artists such as Wilhelm von Kaulbach, Max Klinger, and Eduard Thöny.

I’m deeply in awe of Rei Kawakubo
[a Japanese fashion designer] and her work. She’s most definitely one of my heroes.

There are lots of reasons why I find folklore enjoyable, important, and inspiring. Folk tales are full of deeply powerful imagery.

I feel that, as an artist, it’s my job to give people pleasure. I would never draw anything that lacked beauty or life.

[whole interview here]

Russian-born Vania Zouravliov was inspired from an early age by influences as diverse as The Bible, Dante’s Divine Comedy, early Disney animations and North American Indians.

I would add the characteristic bicorne hat to the list.

 Ballet 2

 Beyond the Clouds


 Furstin der Finsternis


 Girl Color



 Napoleon as a Young Boy


 Rooster 2

 Shi Shi

 Stella 1

 Stella 2

 The Head

 Tiger of Sweden


 White Rooster

 Icon 1

Bow Wow Wow - I want candy (live! 80s)