© 2021 Maria Kravets
On a warm May day, when chestnuts and lilacs were in bloom, I was born in the city of Kiev. I spent my preschool years with my grandmother and while my friends were in kindergarten I communicated with the cacti and violets in the window and various other plants in the yard...and began to draw. When I was 10, my mother took me to a children's art school...and I got in. Then I entered the Republican Art School named after T.G.Shevchenko, where I spent the two most interesting years of my life. The wave of emigration in the late 80s brought me to Israel. I studied at Haifa University, worked here and there, started working with silk, got married and we moved to Munich for two years. Then we lived in Tel Aviv, had a daughter and came to Berlin...I have cacti and violets in my workroom window...and I keep painting.

P.S. My cat Musya thinks that communicating with plants is silly and useless...cats are another matter!
To get started, I wash my chosen piece of fabric and pull it over the frame while still wet. I secure the fabric around the perimeter with steel buttons. Now I can start painting the silk. I work with special paints for painting silk and wool fabrics and with synthetic brushes. Most of the shades I mix from the three primary colors, sometimes adding black. When I am finished, the painted fabric is treated with hot steam, so the pigments are set on the fabric. The steamed fabric is carefully washed and ironed with a hot iron. Done, I am ready to start my next project!
I'm inspired by the play of color and the shadows on the wall of the house across the street, the blue lilac shadows of the tree branches on the park path, and the branches and trees and leaves and bark texture...and flowers.... and insects...and all that infinite variety of shapes, lines and shades that surround us every day. I am also very inspired by my workspace: paper, fabrics, brushes, paints and colored pencils.