* Violetta Chandler *

From Russia with Light: The Art of Violetta Chandler

Luxuriant color, solid drawing and composition, ethereal light and physical movement in light, combined with a refined sensitivity to landscape, and still life painting and portraiture characterizes the oeuvre of Violetta Chandler.

Born November 26, 1965, near Odessa, Ukraine, on the Black Sea.  She is a fifth generation artist initially trained by her father Yakov Tsatskin.  In 1992 she graduated with honors from Odessa State Institute receiving a master degree in fine arts and teaching.

Many of her teachers at O.S.I. were trained at the St. Petersburg Russian Academy of Art.

Chandler moved to Sarasota, Florida with her family in 1995.  She has taught at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota and St. Petersburg College in St. Petersburg, Florida.

As a member of Plein Aire Cottage Artists she was awarded in May of 2007 the Florida Preservation Award for Historic Preservation.  She has also participated in several solo and group exhibitions, including Florence Biennale, Italy, Dungarvan, Ireland, Gulf Coast Museum of Art, Largo, Florida, Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, Florida, St. Petersburg Museum of History, Florida, and the Capitol Meeting Room in Tallahassee, Florida.

In December of 2007 she received a lifetime invitation to participate in the International Juried Exhibition of the Florence Biennale, Italy.

Her painting style integrates 19th Century Russian Realism and Impressionism with 19th Century French Realism and Impressionism fused together with a modernist palate of strong vivid colors. Her panting techniques are technically varied, some paintings combining thin glazes along with thick impasto applications.  In regard to appropriating Russian realist styles in her landscape work two important late 19th Century artists come to mind: Ilya Repin and Ivan Yendogurov.

Repin's paintings are highly emotional and epic.  Yendogurov are spiritual and calm.  It should be noted that Repin's classical earth-toned chiaroscuro has also influenced her portraits.  Because of her academic training in drawing, her portraits have intense precision in the eyes, arms, and hands. While painting portraits the artist likes to talk with her sitters to bring out nuances of character in their posture.

The primary influence in regard to color is Claude Monet, and in French Realism, Camille Corot and Gustave Courbet.  Her color palette is in the Impressionist canon, but the application of thick pigment (impasto) is closer to French Romantic Realism.  These elements are combined with subtle light strokes that give her ideas an unassuming feel for the passage time.  Instead of graying down color in shadows, as in the academic tradition, she applies Monet's idea of complimentary color in the shadow of a lit object's principle hue.

For Chandler "painting is a dialogue rather than a monologue" with the sympathetic observer.  In reference to this, "my paintings can seem unfinished, because I want the emotional connection to the work by the viewer to be completed in the imagination".

Her sensitivity to all the elements of art is demonstrated in the fact that her personal family photographs as well as her photo studies for paintings have all the clarity and balance to be expected of a well-trained eye.

One can easily enter the illusions of her paintings with the suspension of assumptions of arts historical purpose and the singularity of a certain style.  Entering her illusions of space and mood can be effortless, because besides from her professional training her work has insight about our place in the world and the pleasure of seeing light on vivid color.

Kevin Costello, Professor of Art History, Fine Art Critic


Awards, Recognitions, Events, Teachings

Masters Degree in Fine Arts, Ushinsky State Institute, Odessa, Ukraine
Collegiate Professor
Judge and Advisor for National Arts and Letters Society
Member of Fine Arts Society of Sarasota

Some Exhibitions and Awards

Dungarvan, Ireland - Plein Air Cottage Artists
Tallahassee, The Capitol Meeting Room
Solo Exhibition, St. Petersburg Museum of History
Cornell Museum of Art, Del Ray Beach, Florida
Diploma Florence Biennale, Juried International Exhibition of Contemporary Art, Florence, Italy
Award, Florida Trust for Historic Preservation - Plein Air Cottage Artists
Instruction of Oil Painting Workshop, Venice, Tuscany, Italy
First Place Award, The Vinoy Anniversary Juried Competition Pasco-Hernando College, FL - Plein Air Cottage Artists
Florida Wedding Expo, 2018
Honolulu, Hawaii - Month of the Military Child Art Gala - Judge and Featured Artist
Gulf Coast Museum of Art Juried Exhibition, Largo Florida
Solo Exhibition Studio Encanto, St. Petersburg, Florida
Group Exhibition Studio Encanto, Ft. Petersburg, Florida
Solo Exhibition, Palm Avenue Gallery, Sarasota, Florida
Exhibit - Indian Rocks Art Center - Save our Cottages Artists with a Cause


The Ringling School of Art and Design, Sarasota, Florida
St. Petersburg Community College
Guld Coast Museum of Art
Indian Rocks Beach Art Center
Suntan Art Center
Private Lessons

Publications and Television Shows

Tampa Tribune
NY and Chicago Russian American News
St. Petersburg Times
Tampa Bay Metro - Plein Air Artists help preserve historic charm of Indian Rocks Beach, Florida
Sarasota Tribune
Cover of Florida Woman News Magazine
Dupont Registry - Featured Artist - Plein Air Cottage Artists
Milford Times, Michigan
Dungarvan Leader, Ireland
Cover of Attitudes Magazine, Sarasota
Florence Beinnale 2007 Catalog
Victoria Magazine, Painting a Line in the Sand
Southern Lady Magazine - Featured Plein Air Cottage Artists
Your Observer Arts and Entertainment - hhtps://www.yourobserver.com/article/artist-violetta-chandler-sarasota-ukraine-observer


Premier - November 16, 2018 - Central Park Performing Arts Center, Largo, Florida
AMC Cinema, Ybor City. "Save Our Cottages Artists with a Cause" by Emmy Award firm makers 
Lynn Marvin Dingfelder and Larry Wiezycki (selected by Gasparilla Film Festival)
Documentary and Violetta Chandler's participation
Save Our Cottages: Artists with a Cause won the People's Choice Award at Tampa International Firm Festival in 2019