Image via Lucine Poturyan. Palace Bridge in St. Petersburg at 1 am.

Program Review: Art and Museums in Russia

Published: August 7, 2017

Over the summer of 2011, Aleksandra Yevteyeva studied art at the Hermitage through SRAS’s Art and Museums in Russia program. According to Yevteyeva, the experience was an immeasurably valuable one, which deepened her appreciation for world art.  In her own words, it was “a most invigorating and intellectually prosperous process all on its own. [. . . My] days were largely spent [. . . in] private instruction, studying subjects ranging from the Scythians, processions of the Silk Road, Greek Art, Holland and Flanders, Old France, and many other [. . .] discoveries of dazzling rooms filled with artifacts dating back to the 5th or 6th centuries or even later in history. It can be most certainly affirmed that Catherine the Great created quite the palace of riveting treasures that stand to this day to educate all that venture upon it.” As it turns out, the trip yielded more for Yevteyeva than academic fulfillment. She also found her own artistic inspiration in the city of Saint Petersburg. Below is a oil-painting she was inspired to create while standing on a bridge over the Neva, near Nevsky Prospect.

While painting, she says, she was influenced by Dostoevsky’s invigorating prose as well as by Monet’s brand of instantaneous impressionism. “I rather emulated Monet’s technique of instantaneous depiction of a scene through one visit of a specific sight/location.”

Of Russian and Ukrainian descent, Yevteyeva grew up from the age of seven in the United States. She was, as she puts it, “transplanted.” She grew up “feeling a bit disconnected in some fleeting and simultaneously [. . .] affecting moments.” Overall, she considers herself a “hybrid of several cultures,” – a unique experience which has no doubt fueled her art. Although Yevteyeva describes herself as a beginning oil painter and is completely self-taught, her paintings possess a wisdom of style and composition that one would expect from someone with more formal training.

As for Yevteyeva’s future, she plans to continue studying and creating art with an international focus: “In my future prospectus, I foresee intertwining my knowledge of Art History and Literature in creations of my own Art. Thus I may have an affecting voice that can connect to the World. Furthermore, I plan to study with SRAS through their various other programs in my summer interims. Currently, I draw, paint, write, volunteer and travel abroad, and study in the States.”

About the author

Elizabeth Rogers

Elizabeth Everts Rogers has an undergraduate degree in International Studies from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and a master’s in European and Russian Studies from Yale University. She hails originally from Omaha, Nebraska.

Program attended: Home and Abroad Scholar

View all posts by: Elizabeth Rogers