Works of Nikolai Blokhin make stunning impression from the first sight. Bright, sound colors complement each other exquisitely; colorful medley seems to be spontaneous yet strictly structured, and each paintbrush catches your eye at the same time performing important function in entire composition. Blokhin demonstrates unobtrusively his solid academic drawing skills – pleasant rarity in our days. Images of his portraits, landscapes, single and multi-figure genre compositions have a magical quality to remain in one’s memory for a long time.
Nikolai Blokhin was born in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1968. His education in art began very early at the Art School for Gifted Children in 1980. Three years after graduating from the prestigious St. Petersburg Academy of Arts and finishing his post graduate practical training, Blokhin begins his own teaching career. Today, Nikolai Blokhin is a Professor of Drawing at the Academy.
Blokhin’s first serious success was in portrait painting. Portrait is a genre where an artist depends on a model the most, where room for experiment is limited – otherwise the portrait is no longer a portrait. The artist stands on classical humanist traditions according to which a human is considered an integral creation, i.e. his individual features can reveal fundamental essence of his personality with all complexity of his psyche and biography. His portraits are obviously influenced by Impressionists in their aspiration for casual condition and fleeting mood of a model that produce an effect of naturalness and freshness of their first impression. “I try to penetrate the person and capture his or her soul on canvas,” explains Blokhin. “The eyes and how they look are the most important part of the portrait”. At the same time, Blokhin structures his work as an entire esthetic phenomenon with inseparable plastic unity between the portrayed image and the background. Therefore, his portraits retain parity between the real and conventional, the graphic and decorative, thus reminding about the Modern style.
Blokhin’s paintings are part of many museum and private collections, his works are well recognized by general public and specialists in Russia and far beyond as works of exceptional beauty. Among his many honors are the Grand Prize Award in the 2002 International Portrait Competition of the American Society of Portrait Artists at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Best of Show in the 2004 International Portrait Competition of the Portrait Society of America.