Path of a Woman
by Valeriy Belenikin (Russian) http://www.belenikin.com
Valeriy Belenikin’s first language may be Russian but he speaks to us in the universal language of art. The easiest way to describe him is as a contemporary narrative painter. But he is more than that. He draws upon a wide range of themes even delving into fairy tales. He completed a monumental mural in a restaurant in New Hope that is housed in a former church. It is 25x15 feet and is a modernization of the ancient legend of St. George slaying a dragon. It is worth a look.
There is a complexity in his art matched by few others. That is why I spent a considerable amount of time having him explain each painting before I purchased it. That was not easy to do since Belenikin speaks only broken English. But I wanted to avoid the embarrassing situation of having someone ask me “what is going on in this piece” and only able to reply “beats me!”
Belenikin explores the mysteries of life and the complexities of how people relate to each other. He is a gifted storyteller. After reading the descriptions of the four paintings in our collection by Belenikin, I think you will agree that he takes you on an odyssey through life in his art.
That is particularly the case with” “Path of a Woman” (56x42 oil). Here he presents life as theater with everyone wearing costumes. The woman’s costume (something out of the 19th century) reflects the artist’s belief that earlier times were more romantic. The men are wearing masks because they are not always honest with women, particularly beautiful women.
Each male figure represents the type of man that a woman might encounter or dream about in her life. There is a tiger that represents the male predator. It is interesting to identify there others. There is a poet, lawyer, knigh in armor, banker, aristocrat, gigolo, criminal and the artist himself. See if you can find them.