Before the Storm

Igor Barkhatkov

Incarnating his visions freely and skillfully, Igor Barkhatkov utterly manifests the harmony of his spiritual unity with this world, embodied with every stroke of his brush. Like a wizard, with magic power he possesses, he is able to “breathe” into canvas the frosty crispness of winter morning or sweet fragrance of the meadow in blossom, to make the leaves on the trees tremble, and to fill lavishly the perspective of open space with sunlight, to fix subtle changes going on in nature. The main purpose of his art is the poetry of painting, realized by means of transferring to the canvas light and air, using the precise and soft balance of pure tones saturated with colour, which is evidently reflected in his simple and moving village landscapes, in affecting still-lifes and subject compositions. In constant dialogue with nature the thing Igor Barkhatkov values above all is spontaneous method of sketches from nature, yet precluding any risk of hazard. He checks up his impressions by means of tireless study and close review of the same motif, adjusting the composition and approaching even small, one-sitting sketch, through the rules and principles of big canvas. Continuity of traditions of great artists of Russian realistic landscape painting school, traditions of “The Union of Russian Artists”, S. Zhukovski, V. Byalynitsky-Birulya, P. Korin are fully revealed in proceeding artistic search of Igor Barkhatkov, his strive for classic and philosophical message of landscape painting, its truthfulness to life in combination with integral vision and emotional perception. From his father, Anton Barkhatkov, an outstanding landscape painter, he inherited a very clear understanding of high predestination of painter as a prominent figure in cultural life of the society, and in perpetual search for self-realization he has developed for himself the same strong rules and demands, shaping accordingly his creative art, and progressing in his unceasing evolution as a personality.