About artist

Leonid Plekhanov is an award-winning Russian artist who combines a traditional and academic Russian art school background with contemporary techniques, while pursuing a specific vision of the role of art and artist.

American Art Collector, November 2019 Edition


Artist’s statement

I am standing for the idea that artist is responsible for how his art affects the viewer. Thus, the artist’s self-expression is not an end in itself, but the artist must define and articulate the goal for which he creates his works. And for me the goal is in the development of man, human values, humanism.

But the paradox is that the artist’s self-expression is the very means by which this goal is achieved. Therefore, it is impossible to improve as an artist without improving as a person. Because in the end it doesn’t matter in what style or direction the artist works — his personality is always there, between the brushstrokes, whether you want this or not. And here (being in a certain sense a follower of the ideas of K. Malevich) I believe that the most important part of the artwork is not that much in its objective content, but in its pictorial content. Indeed, the same subject can carry a very different emotional and semantic load due to the different pictorial content of the artwork. And this pictorial content is nothing more, but a personal perception and attitude refracted through the technical aspect and “voiced” on the canvas. While the subject matter is only an addition to this pictorial content.

That is why a true artist should be a person seeking self-development as a first. Then, improving simultaneously (with self-development) its technique, the artist, by creating his works, illuminates for others the path his soul went through. And through the perception of the artist’s paintings, the viewer goes this spiritual path much faster, perceiving the artist’s work directly, intense. Thus, painting for me is both my way of discovery of my deepest nature, and my way of telling other people about this path and letting them get the experience of this spiritual movement and, possibly, enrich themselves.


Leonid is a member of Artists Trade Union of Russia, and was also included into the United Register of the Professional Artists of the Russian Empire, the USSR, Russian emigration, Russian Federation and the republics of former Soviet Union (XVIII–XXI centuries).


Awards

  • 2020 — Best Figure and Portrait in 9th PleinAir Salon competition (by PleainAir Magazine) for the painting ‘A posteriōri’
  • 2020 — 2nd Place Overall in 2020 PleinAir Salon Feb/March competition (10th Annual PleinAir Salon Competition) from PleinAir Magazine (United States) for the painting Eden
  • 2019 — Best Water in the 2019 PleinAir Salon June/July competition (9th Annual PleinAir Salon Competition) for the painting The Source
  • 2019 — Finalist of the 14th International ARC Salon Competition
  • 2019 — Annual Finalist (Top-25) for the 8th Annual PleinAir Salon Art Competition from PleinAir Magazine! (for the painting Worlds of childhood)
  • 2019 — Finalist in the March 2019 BoldBrush Painting Competition for the painting Anne
  • 2018 — Best Oil in the 2018 PleinAir Salon April/May competition for the painting Worlds of childhood


Education

2019: Repin Art Institute (Russian Academy of Arts), Saint Petersburg, Russia — Summer School Program on Academic Painting and Drawing

2018-2019: Iconography and Academic drawing in ‘Dionysius’ Iconography school under supervision of Moscow Theological Academy, Moscow, Russia

1999-2005: Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), Department of Physical and Quantum Electronics, Master of Science

In the studio