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The style and symbolism of my paintings is deeply influenced by the cultural heritage of my hometown Saint Petersburg, Russian literature, iconography and folklore. Stemming from my fascination with camp aesthetics and popular culture, I explore notions of eccentricity blended with naïve playfulness, the idea of the extravagant ‘stage’ self and the private self, with all the joy, longing and pain of the human experience. Through each artwork I try to inspire positive emotions and excitement in my audience. My extensive use of bright colours, relief paint, ‘cartoonesque’ style and the grandiose framing technique which has become a signature part of my work, I create a fantasy world where my subjects become manifestations of something magical, and everyday objects are placed on a pedestal and portrayed as iconic. 'IF I WERE A QUEEN' is my ongoing series of paintings. It is an ode to queer culture that focuses on 'la joie de vivre' and resonates with the spirit of Pride, raising awereness for the values of contemporary queer lifestyle.