Nataliya Zozulya is a Ukrainian painter who is resident in both Kyiv and London. She trained at the Ukrainian National Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture where she was subsequently a Senior Lecturer and is currently Associate Professor in Painting.
She has established a reputation in her home country for work in a number of genres, including portrait painting. Her landscape and figure paintings show the influence of her travels in the Philippines, North Africa, and United Kingdom where she has also exhibited. She is a member of the Commonwealth of Artists of the Ukraine and has works in public collections in the Ukraine, Germany, and many other countries.
Kingston-based artist Nataliya Zozulya started working as a figurative painter when she graduated from the prestigious National Academy of Fine Art and Architecture in Kiev, Ukraine. Her tutors were some of the leading artists working in socialist realism so Nataliya’s artistic journey encompassed a departure from their dogmatic influence, developing her own style by interweaving her craftsmanship with her openness to the conceptualism and philosophy of contemporary art.
This evolution is reflected in the series of paintings she has produced throughout her 30-year career, each having a theme running through it: her early subtle figurative paintings explored femininity, later bright bold canvasses depicted the artist’s impressions from her travels in North Africa and Far East. Nataliya uses muffled, reserved colours in her series of London cityscapes, portraying the city void of the immediate physical presence of people, whose influence could always be felt. The artist’s attraction to the dazzling light and colours of the coastline resulted in a brilliant series of seascapes of North Wales, expanding on her studies of water and rowers for the Royal Henley Regatta.
Nataliya’s recent projects included the frieze-like paintings inspired by Mantegna’s Triumph of Caesar, a study of the ever-changing crowd of Kingston citizens: “I was trying to define the multiple reasons of people leaving t heir shelters and going outside, apart from the absolute necessities of going to work, study, childcare, shopping. Was it a need of belonging..? An escape of loneliness? A desire to be lost among others? Hope? Someone loosing their identity, or keeping it?”
This interest in people ensures that Nataliya is foremost an accomplished portrait painter. Building on the success of her earlier portrait series dedicated to the prominent people of Ukraine, she wants to find the Royal Borough’s unsung heroes who make life here so unique. Nataliya explains: “Kingston is unique in that it’s the perfect blend of city and country – but at the same time offers opportunities for people from every kind of background. I find it a fascinating and richly rewarding place to live, and I want to find and celebrate those people who make it so special.”
Nataliya works in layers and her mastery of oil painting techniques allows her to effortlessly adapt her methods to the demands of the project, ranging from washes, thin layers of paint, to coarse, spontaneous impasto, working with palette knives and, if needed, fingers to enrich the texture of the painting.
During her professional career as an artist, Nataliya held numerous successful solo and group shows in London, Moscow, Manila, Ankara, Istanbul, Magdeburg, Kiev and her painting can be found in private collections internationally. In London she is a member of Richmond Art Society, The Fountain Gallery Artists Association, local Art group KAOS. During her professional career as an artist, Nataliya held numerous successful solo and group shows in London, Moscow, Manila, Ankara, Istanbul, Magdeburg, Kiev and her paintings can be found in private collections internationally. She has also enjoyed a thriving academic career in Ukraine, working as Assistant Professor at the Fine Art department of her alma mater.
1981-1988 Kyiv State Institute (now Ukrainian Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture) Department of Painting
1981-1988 Kyiv State Institute of Fine Arts (now National Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture, Ukraine) Department of Painting
1973-1980 The T. G. Shevchenko Republican School of Fine Arts
Member of National Union of Artists of Ukraine since 1993
Member of Kingston Artists Open Studios (KAOS)
Member of Richmond Art Society
Member of Kingston Independent Network of Creatives (KINC)