Nikita Krivoshey is an artist, muralist, and designer, based out of Louisville, KY. His work is vitally connected to his personal spirituality, and it comes as no surprise to discover that he spent one year as a monk in Myanmar, which had a profound influence on his worldview and art. His work charts a progression that now frequently expresses itself in unique ‘mandala’ compositions. Originating in Hinduism as a highly formal symbol or diagrammatic composition meant to represent the universe; Krivoshey uses the idea of the open visual structure, in which an image can be viewed from all four sides, as a foundation for more illustrative, allegorical imagery.
Though Krivoshey has dropped the geometric formalism that we associate with the term, his mandalas still utilize color palettes evocative of Buddhist sand paintings, and his narrative feels like a merging of the figurative tradition in western religious art and the concentration on pattern common in eastern spiritual rituals. The sometimes intentionally distorted perspectives force a less familiar relationship between the viewer and the work, yet it is one that.
“I want to show something from a new perspective,” explains Krivoshey, “while meditating on the process of image making. There is a kind of spirituality that must be discovered in the work that is very important for me to get a sense of meaning and fulfillment from it. Whatever the image is, there is a process of self-inquiry and continuous reflection. This can be seen in my themes with religious references, symbolic details, and occasional perspectival warping. Some of my work that is more abstract focuses on the process, and emotional enfoldment, more so than a specific statement. In such work, the idea is to be transparent to the self and to break down conceptual formation into more core building blocks.”
Even though the artist is working in a largely representational manner, there is a lot of mystery in these enigmatic mixed media drawings. Krivoshey continues: “Communication is an essential aspect of my image making. I want to have a dialogue with the viewer. Although much of my work has specific, intended meanings, I recognize that someone else may perceive an element of my work differently, and I want to understand how these perceptions arise. In this way the viewer and I can better understand the causal factors behind the perceptions of beauty, appreciation, and fascination. I want to inspire the type of investigation that leads to existential insight and greater peace.”
Krivoshey has led a number of community collaborative art projects in Louisville, and has taught art classes to children and adults, in summer camps, community centers, and as an elementary school teacher in South Korea. One particular fascination has always been with psychology and environment as experienced by the individual and this theme has been a common thread throughout much of Krivoshey's artwork.
His work has been displayed locally in Galleries including at the US Congress Building, and KY Center for the Arts. From September to November 2016, Krivoshey was one of four artists to exhibit in two separate shows in Germany at Gut Basthorst in Hamburg, and Buddhas Weg, near Weinheim.
Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Education: BFA, Rhode Island School of Design, Illustration major, 2009