Artist: Alexander Radtke
Alexander Radtke is one of the young contemporary artists, but with the main distinctive feature- he provides an unconventional approach to analyzing and interpreting art movements and directions. Starting with the series «Stillness Speaks» in 2016, his story of the spiritual in painting begins. Radtke was born in Shadrinsk in 1989, graduated from Shadrinsky University, where he studied information technology. In 2011, after completing his studies, he moves to Yekaterinburg, where he works by profession, however, after a while he decides to give up his career in this field and devote himself entirely to painting. Radtke begins to self-study drawing and painting, is engaged in the theory of art, and receives expert advice from local artists. After a while, he participates in the general exhibition of the English Museum of Everything, where he receives a good response to his drawings with watercolors from curators. He travels a lot and is looking for his style of drawing and painting. Early Radtke — at times very unexpected. The themes are different: from portraits to landscapes, from phantasmagoria to realism, it was then that the familiarity with pastels and oil occurred. After a while oil becomes the main tool of the artist, and the seriality of works appears. By 2013, the artist creates 3 different themes for the development of his painting, but the main unifying key between them is expression. By that time, the crucial theme becomes the study of form and its further refraction, be it a human figure, or an animal — distorted, broken, encased in geometric figures or dissolved in the background of the picture. The painter considered classical painters as his teachers: Da Vinci, Rembrandt, Titian and Ingres, but he also drew his inspiration from the works of Francis Bacon, Amedeo Modigliani and Edvard Munch. In 2014, Radtke receives a proposal for a festival in Germany. Immediately agreeing, he moves to Berlin. There he gets acquainted with a completely different level of painting, visits exhibitions of a huge number of artists (Picasso, Bacon, Van Gogh, Turner, etc.), he also faces enormous friendly competition and joins the community of the European Gallery group. After festivals and exhibitions he gets acquainted with Abstractionism. Beginning of 2015 marks the transition to the Abstract. Inspired by abstract art — Kandinsky, Rothko, Pollack, Richter, etc., – Radtke returns to Russia, and begins to study formlessness and color, dominating the aphorism of Picasso: “Painting is a lesson for the blind. The artist does not paint what he sees, but what he feels.” In Yekaterinburg, Radtke is trying to find the starting point for creating an atmosphere of innovation and synthesis of art with the concept of formlessness. (The main goal was the creation of paintings that would be able to evoke not thoughts but emotions). The result of searches, observations and frantic experiences, gradually accumulating over several years, was a concept based on a book named «The Power of the Now» by the German philosopher, writer, and spiritual speaker Eckhart Tolle. To fully consolidate this idea, the artist goes on a journey, and in 2016 participates in the Art-Residence «Bereg», where he thoroughly studies Buddhist practice and Dao philosophy. Having created several works on the theme «Body and corporeality», Radtke fully completes the formation of the concept of formlessness. The paintings unite in a series called «Stillness Speaks», which becomes that symbiosis, the key between painting and spirituality. “Color is a power which directly influences the soul. Color is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammers, the soul is the piano with many strings. The artist is the hand which plays, touching one key or another, to cause vibrations in the soul.” — W. Kandinsky. All of 2017 went to the creation of paintings on this subject, after which an exhibition in Moscow was organized – which in turn led to invitations from various galleries of the world. 2018 was marked with access to the international arena, joining the community of US artists and featuring at exhibitions in New York. Also, cooperation with the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation in the presentation of Russian contemporary art at various venues of the world began.