Born in 1978 in Minsk, Belarus, lives and works in Lisbon, Portugal
Following a lifelong passion for art, renowned figure in the graffiti world, abstract artist Alex Kuznetsov creates his artworks across different mediums, including paintings, works on paper and prints. His energetic abstractions are awash with swipes of bold colours: blacks and whites, reds, blues and pinks. Colour fascinates Kuznetsov, bringing him to a state of meditative flux, where the process is as necessary as a result. Engaging with the vibrations of colour, Kuznetsov amplifies them with the power of movement and fully gives himself to an artwork.
One is tempted to search for a familiar shape in an abstract painting. Vaguely resembling urban imagery - outlines of futuristic cars, contours of helmets, horizon lines with skyscrapers' spikes - Kuznetsov's shapes and colours flow, move and intertwine within the space of a canvas. However, the material and medium gain independence in abstract work, becoming subject matter in its equal right. Departing from Gerhard Richter's expressive superpositions of painting, Barnett Newman's colour fields and Pierre Soulages's Outrenoir, Kuznetsov creates a unique body of work, which strikes the viewer with its inner energy. Applying acrylics with giant aluminium rulers, the artist is conscious of his movements: a mechanical gesture, a power of pressure becomes aggravated with meaning. Kuznetsov's process-led abstract painting practice employs a tempered gestural language where fluidity is a defining material concern, and the process of erasure has equal importance to the intuitive application of paint. The artist examines states of presence and remembrance by exploring a tension between control and eventuality.
Painting for Kuznetsov is a constant quest for perfection and reflects his desire to organize the world according to an innate sense of harmony. Kuznetsov does not provide narratives for his abstractions: instead, he sublimates his visions, bringing them to the canvas for the eventual viewer to decipher and identify with. The essence of Kuznetsov's motivation is best described by Sigmund Freud's in Formulations of the Two Principles of Mental Functioning (1911),
"An artist is originally a man who turns out from reality because he cannot come to terms with the renunciation of instinctual satisfaction which it at first demands. [...] He finds his way back to reality, however, from this world of phantasy by making use of special gifts to mould his phantasies into truths of a new kind, which men value as precious reflections of reality." (Freud, 1975, SE, XII: 224).
Alex Kuznetsov was attracted to painting from early childhood years. He became a graphic designer, then discovered spray paint in 1997; thus, he began his journey in the world of street art and graffiti. Signed with the nicknames Liquid, Ners, Awek, Temos and Monk, his crew True Stilo soon became well-known all over post-Soviet territories and Europe. On a visit to a Hong Kong commercial gallery in 2010, an enormous bright-red canvas captivated his imagination and impressed Alex with the power of pure colour. Later in the same year, news of the Moscow metro attack caught Alex on his balcony, staring at five canvases that a friend had left behind. Alex unpacked his spray cans and started exploring a new direction - Abstract Expressionism.
Alex Kuznetsov collaborates extensively with publications, brands and private institutions such as Vogue, AD Magazine, Absolut, Tumi, Adidas and Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation. His solo exhibitions were held in Lida Historical and Art Museum, National Palace of Art and National Center for Contemporary Arts of the Republic of Belarus, Triumph Gallery, Museum of Moscow, MSK Eastside Gallery, Speerstra Gallery in Switzerland and France, Mirus Gallery in San Francisco, USA. His work has been shown and collected worldwide, including in New York, San Francisco, London, Seoul, Hong Kong, Brussels, Geneva, Paris, Monaco, Moscow, Minsk and Barcelona.
SOLO EXHIBITIONS (selection)
Upcoming in 2022: Solo show @ Speerstra Gallery, Paris, France; Solo show @ Woldt Gallery, Hamburg, Germany; 2021 Another Output @ Triumph Gallery, Moscow, Russia, 2021; 2020 Horizons / Ground Line @ National Centre of Contemporary Art state museum, Minsk, Belarus; 2019 Horizons @ DK Gallery, Minsk, Belarus; 2018 Liaigre Show @ 5th Avenue Atelier, Moscow, Russia; Variations @ Speerstra Gallery, Bursins, Switzerland; 2015 Visual Attractions @ Speerstra Gallery, Bursins, Switzerland; 2014 Metalism @ MSK Eastside Gallery, Moscow, Russia; 2013 Abstractism @ Speerstra Gallery, Bursins, Switzerland; Abstract Spray Painting @ Montana Gallery, Barcelona, Spain
GROUP EXHIBITIONS (selection)
2022 Paper Works @ Speerstra Gallery, Paris, France; Public Art @ Gallery Belyaevo, Moscow, Russia; 2021 Moscow - Seoul: Common Ideas @ Museum of Moscow, Moscow, Russia; Pioneers @ Lida Historical and Art Museum, Belarus; House NR.6; 2020 Group show @ Lida Historical and Art Museum, Belarus; "The 101" @ Adda Sarto Gallery, Paris, France; Nothing Box@ Basmanny Dvor, Moscow, Russia; 2019 Exposición cajita/libro objeto @ Desván Blanco, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain; Border @ National Palace of Art, Minsk, Belarus; 2018 Camino Hacia Oriente @ La Recova art center, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain; 2017 UPAW @ Prince Albert II of Monaco foundation, Monaco; Mirus Gallery Anniversary @ Mirus Gallery, San Francisco; 2015 New Wave Uncut @ MSK Eastside Gallery, Moscow; 2014 A Major Minority @ 1AMSF Gallery, San Francisco, USA; 2013 ST.Art 2013 European contemporary art fair, Strasbourg, France; Summer Group Show @ Speerstra Gallery, Bursins, Switzerland; 2008 Paint Methods, Krasnoyarsk, Russia; Just Write My Name, Saint-Petersbourg, Russia; 2007 Write 4 Gold, Chemnitz, Germany; Write 4 Gold, Moscow, Russia; Write 4 Gold, Warsaw, Poland; Graffiti Art group show @ Winzavod Contemporary Art Centre, Moscow, Russia; 2006 Street Art group show @ The State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia; Write 4 Gold, Warsaw, Poland; Meeting of Styles intl., Chemnitz, Germany; Meeting of Styles intl., Lyon, France; 2005 Meeting of Styles Minsk, Belarus; 2004 Vodka & Fish Tail @ National Palace of Art, Minsk, Belarus; Meeting of Styles Gomel, Belarus; 2003 Meeting of Styles Gomel, Belarus; 2002 Meeting of Styles intl., Anwerpen, Belgium; Meeting of Styles intl., Almere / Amsterdam, Netherland; Meeting of Styles intl., Lodz, Poland; 1999 Graffiti 2000, Moscow, Russia
2021 Vienacontemporary, Vienna, Austria; Cosmoscow Art Fair, Moscow, Russia; 2020 Cosmoscow Art Fair, Moscow Russia; 2017 Art Up! Lille, France
ARTIST IN RESIDENCE
2022 Upcoming @ Pouch Cove Foundation, NL - Canada; 2014 Distil Ennui Studio, London, UK
2020 GUM Redline / Artiq.art / Dostyp.project, Moscow Russia; SVBD.me Interactive Festival / Speaker / Moscow Russia; 2015 British Higher School of Art and Design, Moscow, Russia
2020 Vogue magazine, June 2020 / Editorial project, Moscow, Russia; 2017 TUMI / Artist Suitcase, Monaco; 2015 Idroom Project / Artist Room @ Windsor Hotel, Geneva, Switzerland; 2014 Absolut Artist Collaboration for Museum Moscow, Russia; Adidas X Sole Soul, Museum Moscow, Russia; 2006 Nike X Faces & Laces, Moscow, Russia
HONORS AND AWARDS
Bridgeman Studio Award, shortlist, 2019
Write 4 Gold Russia, Winner, 2006
BOOKS & MAGAZINES
LE MILE magazine, October 2021; AD Architectural Digest magazine, Dec-Jan 2018/2019, March 2020, March 2021; Elle Decoration magazine, Nov 2018; "Mural Art 1", the Book, Publikat, Germany; "27 Addicts" the Book (Boris Schmelter), Munich, Germany; "Graffiti World: Street Art from Five Continents" the Book (Nicolas Ganz), Germany; Flofferz Magazine, Summer 2014; Dandylab Magazine, 2009; Molotok Magazine, 2003; "True Stilo" magazine, 2001
KEY PROJECTS AND EVENTS (selection)
2012 Standart project, Moscow, Russia; 2006 King Ring music label, art direction, Kiev, Ukraine; 2005 27 Addicts: Graffiti & Design Experiments by Boris Schmelter, Minsk 2003 Kofemolka (jury, graffiti contest), Cheboksary, Russia; Meeting of Styles Intl., Gomel, Belarus; 2001 True Stilo graffiti magazine, founder
With a history in graffiti, it is easy to see the rhythm with which he applies the paint be a focal part of the painting, but it goes deeper than just movement. Alex is able to effectively use the medium of paint to capture a myriad of elements that the artist would rather not define as representing any image. Graffuturism.com
Artists who have nurtured the interaction with the creative energy present in the nature of street art, hold much potential to transpire their work into the field of fine art. Widewalls.ch
Felicito y recomiendo la visita de esta exposición, deseo destacar tanto la calidad plástica de la obra como el conceptualismo aunado del artista y la galerista, básicamente es sobresaliente. Aspectos como la arrolladora dinámica narrativa y el magistral dominio del trazo sobrepuesto o hiden tras el bastidor son dignos de elogio. Enhorabuena tanto por el planteamiento como por el desarrollo, el momento de los valientes es aquí y ahora, y así es como se desase el antiguo mundo (galeristico). MTN-World.com