Pale, bone-chilling and delicate. Russian artist Oleg Dou in a conversation with Maria Abramenko about his art, concept and future plans.
What is your educational background and how did you begin your career as an artist?
My mother used to be an artist when I was a kid. And I spent lot of time at her studio where she and other artists were creating. I was interested in art from that early times. Later I studied economy, but worked as a graphics designer. I do not have art education, and doing art started as my hobby. In 2005 I bought my first camera and started to do retouched photography. But I do not limit myself to any media, I also do porcelain, sculptures and video.
Can you tell us more about your technique?
I had one friend with a pale face like in old paintings and I decided to take a shoot. She had no perfect skin and I wanted to retouch it like in a fashion magazine. When I started doing photography in 2005, I was not so good at Photoshop. I was searching the web for some tutorials and tried to retouch her face. But I couldn’t stop at the right moment and did too much retouch, so the skin looked unrealistic smooth and porcelain like. It was made by mistake, however the result was interesting and I developed this effect to my style.
What is your concept of beauty?
It is not easy to explain, but I think beauty is tightly connected to our attitude to the world. The connection of our consciousness with it is expressed exactly by aesthetics.
Can you tell us about your last solo show at Osnova Gallery in Moscow?
The show name was “Mutant”. I was working for three years to complete it. I was exploring the limits of aesthetics in images and surreal objects that were something between sculpture and furniture. In that case I was asking myself if there is an aesthetic ideal today, whether it is new or old and “resuscitated”.
What are you working on at the moment?
I have some ideas for the next show, but probably I’ll need a few years to complete. But I didn’t start any production yet. All I can tell you so far that it will be about temptation and innocence.