by Betsy Wills
I have always liked art that transports me to another world, and the fantastical work of Ilya Zomb does that in spades. Ballerinas and greyhounds, hawks and herons, bucks wading in the ocean passing the time of day fishing, they all exist side by side in these environments that are nonsensical but also strangely familiar. Who could resist the dancer balancing oranges in a figure four while the smart owl balances precariously on a pyramid? They have the lyricism of Alice in Wonderland and the foreboding narrative of Bradbury’s The Illustrated Man. Zomb paints in the classical tradition but challenges us with his daring juxtapositions. I like to be challenged, and I like to smile, and this art does both.
Betsy Wills admits that she is blissfully ignorant when it comes to art curation and selection. She is, however, an avid art lover and collector and maintains the popular art blog artstormer.com. Wills is proud of the fact that her art does not match her sofa.
Artist Bio – Ilya Zomb
Ilya Zomb received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in visual arts in his native country, Russia, but has built his career as a New York artist. His paintings depict fantastical worlds where wild animals and ballerinas coexist. The naturalistic style of the paintings creates a paradox with the unreal worlds he presents. He draws inspiration for his everyday interactions in New York City. To him, the large animals represent men, and the dancers represent women. Although not religious, they are his versions of Adam and Eve in their Garden of Eden. His art has been compared to masters such as Botticelli, Degas, and Magritte, but his work maintains his unique vision. With numerous international solo and group exhibitions as well as books and articles published about his art, Zomb’s popularity continues to grow. Several of his paintings belong to museum collections in Knoxville, Tennessee, and Siev, Ukraine. He is represented by Caldwell Snyder Gallery and Campton Gallery, New York City, and Bennett Galleries. www.zombart.com, www.caldwellsnyder.com, www.camptongallery.com.