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Monday, January 20, 2014

VOTSMUSH Interview

Inimitable and unlike anybody else artist Alexandr Shumtsov/Votsmush deserved a genuine recognition of intellectual part of the Internet audience although he has no art page of his own. Staying indipendent from official art institutions his Art keep gaining popularity and more fans.

Alexander, why did you take a nick name?
Because when I studied at the Theatre and Cinema Academy we lived at a student hostel. We were 4 people in the room. I would fix a notebook to the wall and announce that it would be a ship`s journal. Everyone would draw his portrait and write his nick name. I wrote my name conversely.

A. Votsmush

Do you identify yourself with your nick or your real name?
Lately with the nick name.

All right, then Alexander Votsmush. When watercolor medium entered your life?
Perhaps when I was attending a kindergarden, when I saw it the first time… Then consiously at the Art school, then even more consiously in Art college… I also was painting with watercolor when I was in army. But I really understood what it is all about in 1994. Then I knew where to go.

A. Votsmush

You live in Sevastopol, Crimea. Far away from the capitals of Art life. How have you become well known?
Have I? Probably there were some exhibitions, people liked them, someone even bought some pieces… There were many exhibitions, especially in 1990s, beginning of 2000s. And then Internet… my friends help me to post my pictures, they also write something…

Meeting with Alexander Votsmush for the interview

Are you consciously don`t use Internet?
I want to do it very much but it has been out of reach so far. I have to get into it, reply the letters… Perhaps I will have to come to it some day.

A. Votsmush

Where do you get your ideas from?
Actually everywhere. When I was a little boy, perhaps from fairytales and cinema, then from told stories, then I would start telling stories myself. Then we had a team of mates who would tell stories when they come together. …and the world around.

A. Votsmush

Do you prefer to collect material by your camera or by sketching?

…or you store it in your head?
All together. It is all interacts, then divides into components and then works. Everything is there already. Then you do something and you succeed… or you do not.

A. Votsmush

How do you get such saturation without overloading the paper? What paints do you use?
German paints from tubes. It`s very good when there is a large volume of liquid mixtures ready to paint. Just to take it with a brush and through to the paper.

What kind of brush?
Starting from broad flat bristle brush for wall painting to a simple pencil. Watercolor pencil is also good. Then adding hands, nails – all is in action…

A. Votsmush

Does it all happen spontaneously?
In impuls, in gust of dance with watercolor…

How do you get the precise white areas?
There is a masking fluid. Or you can also paint around. This is how I used to do, now I am using the masking.

A. Votsmush

What supplementary tricks do you use?
Masking, nails scratching, watercolor pencils…

Do you work on composition in advance or the drawing is born right on a paper?
I presumably know the principles of composition. First I am making a small draft with a gel pen or a pencil to avoid then unnecessary movements on the paper.

A. Votsmush

Do you consider your approach in watercolor more as painting or graphic?
I don`t know how to call it, more important that it should work for myself and the viewer.

I saw a spectacular edge of a sheet of your painting. How did you do that?
Just cut with a liner but not to the bone. Then tear slightly, cut and… everyone says oh! It`s a miracle, how did you do it?

A. Votsmush

What size of paper is most attractive for you to work on?
The largest possible. The largest I have done so far is 145x145 cm – it is very inspiring. That`s what is needed!

What kind of paper do you use?
Mainly the one with a smooth surface. There used to be a good paper – soviet Gosznak. Also I like a common drawing paper, Italian is better, it keeps the color. Arches satin is good but the color is fading.

A. Votsmush

The drawing paper is rather thin. How do you work on it – do you fix it?
I fix it on a boad. The largest size 145 (the width of a roll paper is 150 cm).

What do you stress in your work with student?
Maybe they have to remember the time when they were children, first impression of everything, when they were surprised by everything around… first emotions should be combined with the present experience, they have to drop all unnecessary, that disturbs… to combine the qualities of an adult person without extra gloomy attitude, with the state of mind of a child when he was surprised the first time.

A. Votsmush

How important is imagination in work of an artist?
For me it`s important, for someone it`s difficult. Imagination can be developed or you have to be born with it.

What is more important for you – the process or the result?
50x50. For instance you are cooking a cake, prepare the components and thinking, what a wonderful cake would it be… When you are ready with it everyone likes it… or doesn`t, if you didn`t succeed.

A. Votsmush

Do you follow the art life? Are you interested in art of your artist fellows?
I am very interested. Today you gave me your book, and there were artists I saw in the Internet, I like them very much… but I don`t follow, perhaps I should be more interested…

Do you need to integrate into the Art life or his or her creativity is sufficient for an artist?
It`s rather cool to participate in worthy events.

Do you have any rules?
Of course, some, I think.

Are those rulesinvented by you?
Probably those rules are convenient for me.


  1. Hello, Did you attend the Masterclass he gave in the month of January is this where you interviewed him? It would have been nice if he had elaborated more with the questions you asked.
    His paint is so interesting on the paper I wish he said more.

  2. Hello again,
    please the "spectacular edge of a sheet of your painting" that you asked about, if you have a photo Please post it.