Mostly some suggestions for rephrasing. I may have inadvertently split a hair or two, you decide.
Botaio is a young and gifted painter. His talent for painting was revealed when he was still in his early teens. Originally he had sought to receive artistic training at an art school, but after a few years of study Botaio grew disillusioned with the existing educational system and quit, becoming a self-taught painter. The teaching methods at the school of painting appeared hopelessly stuck in the Soviet era with its outdated clichés, which did not allow the young artist’s vision to find its fullest expression.
One might suppose that the chief reason for the young artist's rebellion against his conservative mentors was that Botaio worked in some sort of expressionist manner, or resorted to unconventional artistic devices, but that was not the case. Quite the contrary, nothing attracted Botaio more than canvases by Renaissance and Baroque painters. He was greatly inspired by the colors and spatial effects of the Old Masters. To learn more of his new ‘tutors’, Botaio entered the Universal History of Art Department of the Russian State University for the Humanities and graduated cum laude in 2010. While at the University, Botaio continued his self-study of the ‘laws’ of his art, his creative drive compelling him to copy works by such masters as Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Caravaggio. During that period he made over eighty copies.
At the same time, Botaio’s original works continued to appear. Having made a series of portraits of his friends and relatives, fashioned after the style of his revered Old Masters, his starting point, he embarked upon a new phase creating diverse narrative compositions of his own invention. In planning a religious-themed composition, he informs it with a message clear to the viewer, as the painter’s contemporaries (not infrequently the painter’s closest friends), immersed in the atmosphere of other epochs, pose as biblical characters. Each painting, whether it represents a girl in a café or a dialogue between an abbot and a sinner, is a complicated narrative in its own right and the only way to unravel it is by deciphering the symbolism of the objects surrounding the models. Botaio’s works offer yet another proof that, despite the great diversity of contemporary art forms, oil painting has not lost its attraction for the viewer. On the contrary, it is works of this kind which, instead of making you wonder "what is the guy trying to say with this stuff?", inspire you to undertake a journey deep down into the artist’s inner world, discerning the history and craftsmanship which point to the true meaning of the word ‘art’.
Exhibitions: The Landmark Gallery. London. 2011
All the exhibits are available for purchase.
All paintings in this section belong to the artist’s professional period, except for No. 1, his very first work. Each painting bears its title on the back of the canvas and is signed ‘Botaio’. Each painting has its own number corresponding to the chronology of their
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