She came from Russia and made Bahrain her home. With a passion from art and painting from a very early age, she devotes her waking hours to the pursuit of art and to train aspiring artists in discovering the art that lies within them. Meet Alexandra Novik to take a peek into her world of bright colours and profound world view.
Tell us briefly about yourself: where you were born and raised, your educational background, etc.
My name is Alexandra Novik and I am an artist, art teacher, art mentor and art guide. I was born in the Ukraine in 1987 as a second child in the family. From the early childhood I showed great interest in painting and drawing, which was noticed by my parents, who tried to encourage my interest in the arts and develop my art skills. Then we moved to Russian federation.
At the age of ten I started attending Smolensk Arts School, and at the age of 16 she entered the Department of Fine Arts and Graphics of Smolensk State University. Five years of the University studies and self-development perfected my skills, gave me profound knowledge of the arts schools and techniques, and helped me to work out my own artistic style and vision of “life in the art”.
As well as that I took a number of master classes from famous Russian artists and started learning more about realism – my favorite artistic school.
Were you initiated into arts and painting during your childhood?
Yes, I have been painting and drawing since the early childhood. All my life is an artwork—the most inspiring artwork.
And I knew that I will be artist even when I was a child. I remember when I was very small my biggest dream was to have a never-ending stock of canvases and colors so I can paint all the time.
Tell us briefly about the kind of arts that you pursue. Who has been your inspiration?
I enjoy making portraits. I am open in my art works; it all depends on inspiration and mood.
The main inspiration in my life has been the people whom I love. Besides, I am quite inspired by the classical art works of Salvador Dali, Van Gogh, Jean-Francois Millet and Vasily Perov.
I love surrealistical realism with a touch of impressionism.
Tell us about the significance of art in your life.
Art is my life. If I am not inspiring or teaching then I am busy painting.
I believe we can find beauty everywhere. You just need to look for it.
As for me I always trying to catch the beauty in the moment and paint it. I love colors; I love bright colors or “tasty” colors as I call it and interesting forms. I am always searching for deeper meaning in any art piece. And I am always trying to reach its “deepness” in my own art works.
What have been the major challenges in your path so far?
I guess it was always two kinds of challenges:
First is the state where the muse is gone and you are just sitting and waiting for inspiration.
The second challenge is that art culture is not very popular right now.
People of our generation prefer fast “popcorn” entertainment but not truly art.
Do you feel that a formal training is essential to pursue arts?
Yes formal or classical art education is very important. Only when a student has acquired the knowledge of perspectives, color combinations, proportions and etc. can a student truly be successful, unless he is a genius. Just to buy canvas and splash some paints on it and call it “abstract” – it’s not authentic art but a waste of colors.
Tell us about the art classes that you offer.
It’s been 3 years since I opened my art studio. http://jemnovik.wix.com/palitra
The Palitra Studio is devoted to a rigorous and dynamic education in the visual arts, challenging students to think, research, produce, and teach art critically, with an awareness of historical as well as contemporary contexts.
The Palitra Studio is committed to preparing students for careers in Studio Art, Art History, and Art and Visual Culture Education in an increasingly diverse and technological world.
We are the only one art studio in Bahrain which presents classical art education and provides all the materials.
And during this period I taught and keep teaching a lot of students from 3 years old to 53 years old. For some of them I had been just teacher, but most of them calling me friend, mentor and even guru (of art of course).
What kind of help and support do you seek to help reach your goal?
The biggest goal is to open art school where anyone can learn how to paint and become certified artist and art teacher. More art educated young people are what our World needs.
This place could be an art gallery as well, where any talented artists can showcase their artwork totally free and openly. Basically we need support to open such artistic educational place.
What is your message to aspiring artists?
Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success. Don’t be scared to show your talents and be sure in yourself. Don’t feel shy to remind yourself about how great you are in something. It’s not vanity, it is self-inspiration.
No need to compare yourself, no need to show off. Try to be modest but inspirational.
The balance in your talents and self-realization is important.