Ilya Zomb

In a new series of paintings, Ilya Zomb turns his intricate imagination to birds, depicting them in balancing acts with insects and fruit in whimsical, wonderful still-lifes. The birds are as precise and specific as Audubon’s: royal blue hadeda ibis, yellow-billed stork, African crake, ashy-headed goose, each painted in a luminous palette with exquisite detail down to the individual markings on their feathers. Gazing at the viewer with sharp eyes, they possess an avian quality that is uncannily lifelike, a perfect blend of elegance and comic charm.

Biography

In the paintings of Russian-born artist Ilya Zomb, images of ballerinas, elephants, and gigantic fruits appear as if out of a dream, but the artist says it’s the everyday life in New York,where he lives, that inspires his flights of fancy.

Occupying the shadowy space "between the possible and impossible, the real and unreal," Ilya Zomb's brilliantly conceived, chimerical paintings lie at the elusive intersection of reality and pure fantasy. They are reminiscent of such diverse masters as Botticelli, Degas, and Magritte – but perhaps one of the most intriguing aspects of this Russian artist's work is that, despite myriad tempting comparisons, it remains curiously unique.

Zomb's images can be incredibly theatrical, recalling the dream sequences often found in productions of dance, or the nature-defying feats of circus performers. At other times the scenes have a mythical, literary feel, and we can easily imagine them as sumptuous illustrations for a lost book of parables penned by the likes of Scheherazade. An intensely perceptive artist, Zomb never fails to account for the contradictory emotions provoked by the uncertainty of reality. His works are dynamic with an air of celebration, of a spectacular and opulent grand finale, while other pieces of his are poignant and meditative as a still pool.

Like all great spinners of tales, Zomb is a superb sorcerer. He continually manipulates our most basic expectations by altering proportion, hinting at hidden allegory, and manifesting, through careful realism, scenes that barely perch on the possible. Entreating viewers to "look at my paintings as you would travel to some exotic country and stare in amazement at the strange new world," Zomb deftly conjures a vision where man-sized fruit is perpetually ripe; where beasts and storms, purged of their minatory natures, are harbingers of peace and beauty. His dreamy, enchanting work allows for the kind of utopic harmony that is all but nonexistent in the realm of the brutally real. And his stirring messages, while rooted in an exploration of the ancient human longing to control circumstance and environment, bear relevance to the most contemporary of concerns.

Education

1975–79 BFA, Odessa State Art College, USSR.

1971–75 Odessa Art School, USSR.


Museum Collections

Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, TN.

National Museum of Art of Ukraine, Kiev, USSR.


Publications

Cover, Arabella Magazine, Winter 2015. • Editorial, Arabella Magazine, Winter 2015. • Editorial, Nashville Arts Magazine, January 2014. • Cover, Marin Magazine, January 2012. • Cover, American Arts Quarterly Magazine, Winter 2010. • Menninger, Perspective, Number 2, 2002, Number 2, 2004. • Art Now Gallery Guide, May 2004. • METPO, Russian American Weekly Magazine, May 2004. • The Week, Page 26, November 30, 2001. • The Spirit of Butterflies, Harry N. Abrams, Inc. 2000. • Cover, Entree Magazine, 2000. • Mode Magazine, 1999, 1998. • The Knoxville News-Sentinel, 1998. • Gallery & Studio, 1999. • Metro Pulse, 1996, 1998. • Novoye Russkoye Slovo (Russian American Daily Newspaper) 1993, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2007. • The Nantucket Beacon, 1996. • The New York Observer, 1996. • Russian Reporter, 1996. • ArtSpeak, 1993, 1995. • The Worcester Phoenix, 1995. • North County News, 1993. • Jewish Week, 1993. • Voices, 1990. • Heritage Villager, 1990.


Interviews

Interview, TV Channel "Culture", Russia, 2007.

Interview, WMNB, Russian American Broadcasting Co., 1995.

Interview, WCCA Cable 13, Massachusetts, 1995.


Selected Solo Exhibitions

2020  Birds’ Hubbub, Caldwell Snyder Gallery, Montecito

2017 Niches & Spaces, Caldwell Snyder Gallery, SF, CA.

2015 Caldwell Snyder Gallery, San Francisco, CA.

2013 Outdoor Realities, Campton Gallery, New York City.

2011 Indoor Realities, Campton Gallery, New York City.

2009 Overcoming Stillness, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

2006 Metamorphoses of Stillness, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

2004 Pairs, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

2001 New Myths, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

1999 Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

1998 Bennett Galleries, Knoxville, TN.

           Sailor Valentine's Gallery, Nantucket, MA.

1997 Daily Phenomena, Avery on Bond, New York, NY.

           Davidson Galleries, Seattle, WA.

1996 Bennett Galleries, Knoxville, TN.

1995 Central Park's Fairy Tales, Synchronicity Space Gallery, New York, NY.

Press

PRESS

Selected Artworks

Warming Up Before the Butterfly Stretch | SOLD

Warming Up Before the Butterfly Stretch | SOLD

Oil on Canvas

34 x 44 inches

180251

Education

1975–79 BFA, Odessa State Art College, USSR.

1971–75 Odessa Art School, USSR.


Museum Collections

Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, TN.

National Museum of Art of Ukraine, Kiev, USSR.


Publications

Cover, Arabella Magazine, Winter 2015. • Editorial, Arabella Magazine, Winter 2015. • Editorial, Nashville Arts Magazine, January 2014. • Cover, Marin Magazine, January 2012. • Cover, American Arts Quarterly Magazine, Winter 2010. • Menninger, Perspective, Number 2, 2002, Number 2, 2004. • Art Now Gallery Guide, May 2004. • METPO, Russian American Weekly Magazine, May 2004. • The Week, Page 26, November 30, 2001. • The Spirit of Butterflies, Harry N. Abrams, Inc. 2000. • Cover, Entree Magazine, 2000. • Mode Magazine, 1999, 1998. • The Knoxville News-Sentinel, 1998. • Gallery & Studio, 1999. • Metro Pulse, 1996, 1998. • Novoye Russkoye Slovo (Russian American Daily Newspaper) 1993, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2007. • The Nantucket Beacon, 1996. • The New York Observer, 1996. • Russian Reporter, 1996. • ArtSpeak, 1993, 1995. • The Worcester Phoenix, 1995. • North County News, 1993. • Jewish Week, 1993. • Voices, 1990. • Heritage Villager, 1990.


Interviews

Interview, TV Channel "Culture", Russia, 2007.

Interview, WMNB, Russian American Broadcasting Co., 1995.

Interview, WCCA Cable 13, Massachusetts, 1995.


Selected Solo Exhibitions

2020  Birds’ Hubbub, Caldwell Snyder Gallery, Montecito

2017 Niches & Spaces, Caldwell Snyder Gallery, SF, CA.

2015 Caldwell Snyder Gallery, San Francisco, CA.

2013 Outdoor Realities, Campton Gallery, New York City.

2011 Indoor Realities, Campton Gallery, New York City.

2009 Overcoming Stillness, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

2006 Metamorphoses of Stillness, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

2004 Pairs, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

2001 New Myths, Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

1999 Campton Gallery, New York, NY.

1998 Bennett Galleries, Knoxville, TN.

           Sailor Valentine's Gallery, Nantucket, MA.

1997 Daily Phenomena, Avery on Bond, New York, NY.

           Davidson Galleries, Seattle, WA.

1996 Bennett Galleries, Knoxville, TN.

1995 Central Park's Fairy Tales, Synchronicity Space Gallery, New York, NY.

Biography

In the paintings of Russian-born artist Ilya Zomb, images of ballerinas, elephants, and gigantic fruits appear as if out of a dream, but the artist says it’s the everyday life in New York,where he lives, that inspires his flights of fancy.

Occupying the shadowy space "between the possible and impossible, the real and unreal," Ilya Zomb's brilliantly conceived, chimerical paintings lie at the elusive intersection of reality and pure fantasy. They are reminiscent of such diverse masters as Botticelli, Degas, and Magritte – but perhaps one of the most intriguing aspects of this Russian artist's work is that, despite myriad tempting comparisons, it remains curiously unique.

Zomb's images can be incredibly theatrical, recalling the dream sequences often found in productions of dance, or the nature-defying feats of circus performers. At other times the scenes have a mythical, literary feel, and we can easily imagine them as sumptuous illustrations for a lost book of parables penned by the likes of Scheherazade. An intensely perceptive artist, Zomb never fails to account for the contradictory emotions provoked by the uncertainty of reality. His works are dynamic with an air of celebration, of a spectacular and opulent grand finale, while other pieces of his are poignant and meditative as a still pool.

Like all great spinners of tales, Zomb is a superb sorcerer. He continually manipulates our most basic expectations by altering proportion, hinting at hidden allegory, and manifesting, through careful realism, scenes that barely perch on the possible. Entreating viewers to "look at my paintings as you would travel to some exotic country and stare in amazement at the strange new world," Zomb deftly conjures a vision where man-sized fruit is perpetually ripe; where beasts and storms, purged of their minatory natures, are harbingers of peace and beauty. His dreamy, enchanting work allows for the kind of utopic harmony that is all but nonexistent in the realm of the brutally real. And his stirring messages, while rooted in an exploration of the ancient human longing to control circumstance and environment, bear relevance to the most contemporary of concerns.

Press

Ilya Zomb

In a new series of paintings, Ilya Zomb turns his intricate imagination to birds, depicting them in balancing acts with insects and fruit in whimsical, wonderful still-lifes. The birds are as precise and specific as Audubon’s: royal blue hadeda ibis, yellow-billed stork, African crake, ashy-headed goose, each painted in a luminous palette with exquisite detail down to the individual markings on their feathers. Gazing at the viewer with sharp eyes, they possess an avian quality that is uncannily lifelike, a perfect blend of elegance and comic charm.

SAN FRANCISCO

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San Francisco, California 94108

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Sunday by appointment 

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ST. HELENA

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SANTA BARBARA

 

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Santa Barbara, California 93108

Monday, Thursday - Saturday, 10am - 5pm

Sunday, 11am - 5pm

Tuesday - Wednesday by Appointment

805.770.7170

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