Maria Kostareva

Maria Kostareva is a Russian born artist living and working in Moscow. Her paintings use saturated and vibrant colors, remove shadows to heighten both their stylized and disconnect from reality, translating the three-dimensional world into color spots, all while retaining the complexity of the image. They are exuberant and lively in their palette, influenced by European painters Henry Matisse and Felix Vallotton, as well as old Russian religious paintings.

In her works Maria is fascinated by the connections between familiar and unfamiliar people, spaces, events. Avoiding storytelling she leaves the nature of these links unsolved. This is her way to make people a little more sensitive to their everyday life and to each other. Often portraying herself or her twin sister, she executes universal feminine images that overcome personal experience. Using memories to the same extent as other visual finds she creates timeless scenes that appear like half-remembered or imagined memories filled with a sense of nostalgia and longing.

Maria Kostareva is currently focused on oil painting. Her work combines a flattened perspective; unpredictable color-schemes; and everyday life subjects. The flatness of the works references Kostareva’s so-called ‘former life’ as a graphic designer, but now it is the way that allows her to convey vivid scenes that oscillate between abstraction and representation. Another source of her visual language came from her experiences in black ink painting. This ascetic technique led her to give up details for the sake of clarity. A master of sophisticated compositions, she establishes three-dimensional space while maintaining the flatness of the canvas.

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