Artist's Bio Oleg Vassiliev


Born in Moscow in 1931, Vassiliev is one of the most important artists to emerge from behind the iron curtain.
His artistic ideologies long ran counter to the State-espoused modes of Socialist Realism; Vassiliev took his influence from the first generation of 20th century Russian avant-garde artists who had overturned the stultifying conventions of the past.
Early in his career Vassiliev supported himself primarily as a book illustrator, while in his personal work he employed modes of expression similar to those practiced by Picasso, Cézanne, Degas, Matisse, Rothko, and Pollock.
As a member of the Russian Underground, Vassiliev practiced largely in secrecy, and like many of his generation of artists who lived and worked under the restrictive thumb of Soviet censorship, Vassiliev left Russia after the end of the cold war, relocating to New York City in 1990.