Maria-Margarita has exhibited a painting in the Art Louvre Expo 2016 and is the only Bulgarian artist having a permanent exposition participation in the Museum of fine Arts in Las Vegas.
Maria-Margarita, tell me when did you start painting? Painting has been part of my life from the very beginning. Ever since kindergarten I have tried to portrait my teachers and the staff, and after these attempts they would set exhibitions of my works. I remember once a teacher asked me: “Are you going to be an artist when you grow up?” At that time such a question seemed quite strange to me and I answered without giving it a second thought: “Actually, I am an artist.”, which, of course, made the teachers laugh. But then I truly believed that being an artist is not a profession. This is something humans are born with – you are either a natural born artist, or not – you are not to become such. Certainly hard work and persistence are factors one needs to develop what one has.
Now you are an established painter, you have a PhD from the National Academy of Fine Arts. Was it a difficult road?
I never wanted to be a professional painter on purpose. Painting is part of me, rather a prerequisite of living than a profession. That is why I consider myself a lucky person, because I do what I like to do, every day.
I have been lucky to grow up in a wonderful family where everybody encouraged me to engage in what I like best, and they still do. People around me support me wholeheartedly, for which I am grateful. Back at the time when I applied for the National Academy of Fine Arts, it was my relatives who persuaded me to do so. I went to the exam just like that, but I was admitted first in the roll in the major “Mural painting”. And although drawing to me has been always a pleasure, it should be noted that it takes a lot of hard work, hours and hours of hard work and sleepless nights. It often took me 16 to 17 hours of work per day to finish a project.
Is there any definite trend or style that you are following in art, and what is the inspiration for your work? I think a person should be himself in art, to express his thoughts and ideas – the things that really move them, to send messages he wants to get across. I do not think artists should follow trends in art if they themselves do not believe in them. For me, the human is my greatest inspiration – the human figure and the human face with its countless emotional states. This is the tool I use to express my ideas and to send messages. I am deeply moved by the old Bulgarian myths and legends and their everlasting mystery, which explains why they are often present in my work.
Your work is reflecting the spiritual world and your paintings often contain such stories or symbols. Is this the method you use in creating your works? I think any work of art should be made in a way that the artist be able to build in part of them soul in it. That would make a work of art enlighten. This is the way I try to work and often people tell me that images in my paintings look very much alive.
I know you had many opportunities to live and work abroad, but you have chosen Bulgaria to stay. Do you regret your decision?
True, I had several opportunities to leave the country. Back when I was a first year student, an American professor invited me to the University of fine Arts in Los Angeles. Then I was convinced that I can learn more about the fine arts and techniques in painting in the academy in Bulgaria than in Los Angeles, and I was proved right. Later me and my husband were invited to Vienna, and in a year we were invited to San Francisco. We refused to leave Bulgaria, although these were very attractive offers. I am convinced that in the contemporary world it is perfectly possible to work for the world from home.
And that is exactly what I do.
You are constantly working on clients” errands and exhibitions in Bulgaria and abroad. Would you tell us more about it? I am lucky to sell in Bulgaria, but also in Germany, at the most, in France, England, Spain, the USA and elsewhere. My latest participations abroad happened to be in several countries: in the beginning of 2016 I exhibited in England in Lily Clifford Gallery, later I was invited in an international exhibition of fine arts in Southern Nevada Museum of Fine Arts – Las Vegas, US, and then I was selected for publication in the popular in the US book of fine arts Current Masters. The museum rated very highly my painting and wished to have it for its permanent exposition which contains many well-known painters. It turned out I am the only Bulgarian artist to have found a place in the collection of this exposition for the moment. In April two Italian art critics offered me to take part in Internationale Tiepolo – Arte Milano, Italy –an art event for fine arts. I was awarded for achievement in fine arts and a few publications in profile magazines followed. In June I was invited to Verona Fair 2016, Italy and my work was included in The 21th Century Art Book and awarded. In October I was selected and participated in Art Louver Expo 2016 – Paris, France. To my enjoyment, my work was praised and bought.
Now I have several more invitations to take part in new international events in many country, including India, some galleries in the US and Vienna for single exhibitions. I believe that when a person finds out their vocation and follows their heart, despite the difficulties, one day he will find reward for the efforts. And even if the achievement is not that much, at least they would have had an interesting life when they did what they liked best. I am very fond of two sayings which I will try to cut in one: “Follow your heart and what will be will be”–with a sense of sensibility, of course.
You have created a large number of artworks of different techniques and genres. Where one can see them? Indeed, I have a large portfolio. I paint icons, murals, paintings, illustrations for books and magazines. I work on mosaics and stained glasses, together with other professionals. I post part of my works on my website..
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