By Bonnie Gangelhoff
As a young boy growing up in Bulgaria, Ignat Ignatov harbored a dream: to come to America. Interested in art from an early age, Ignatov was one of 30 youngsters selected for a coveted spot at one of the country’s most respected art schools at age 13. In 1997, using proceeds from the sale of one of his wood carvings, he financed his trip to Southern California, where he lives and works today.
When Ignatov—now 27 and a United States citizen—isn’t teaching at the Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Art, he is painting in his studio. His expressionistic figures, still lifes, and landscapes are explorations of color, light, texture, emotion, and atmosphere. “I enjoy painting the figure the most, capturing the human face and form,” he says. His inspiration often comes from Russian painters such as Ilya Repin and Nicolai Fechin. When asked about his plans for the future, the artist replies, “My goal is to always stay fresh and to experiment.”
At the annual Oil Painters of America national show held in Chicago, IL, in May, Ignatov won an Award of Excellence for his depiction of a bagpipe player. He is represented by Greenhouse Gallery of Fine Art, San Antonio, TX; Parkside Gallery, Carmel, CA; Meyer Gallery, Santa Fe, NM; Total Arts Gallery, Taos, NM; and www.ignatovart.com.
Featured in “Artists to Watch” December 2005