Russian-born artist Irena Kononova combines oil paint, sand, and marble dust on canvas to create her textured landscape paintings. Many pieces involve vibrant, illuminated pathways that visually draw the viewer through the dark surroundings and into the horizon. The images are intriguing and entrancing. The complexity of the color and textures along with the illusions of bright sunlight will entice a viewer to spend hours getting lost in the beauty of her landscapes.
Kononova has always been interested in run-down buildings that are “so expressive in human wear and tear and so saturated with history that they look like a cut through time.” As a result, she was inspired to combine architectural elements and landscapes to create a strong juxtaposition between the rough chaos of the surface with the smooth serenity of the painted landscape. Her intentions are “to provoke the viewers into contemplating the ever widening gap between man-made world and eternal world of nature that we so often are unable to protect… In these paintings sand mixed with oils becomes a symbolic gesture of reconciliation between the world of art and the world of nature.”