Tis the season for Riverside Artswalk, with the rains slowing and the weather warming. The abnormal amount of rain ushering in a super bloom, just in time for Easter. Spring is a great time for visual artists, not just for Artswalk, but to get outside and capture the beauty of nature, with the lush greenery and wildflowers showing off a sight rarely seen in the sunny Inland Empire. Another site to see is the new exhibition at A Blve Rose Gallery featuring the work of Ekaterina Orlovie, which features bright pastel colors and flowers – an amazing representation of nature and a reflection of our season.
Ekaterina Orlovie is a mixed media watercolor artist who was born in Slavyansk-na-Kubani, Russia. She moved to California 10 years ago and now calls Riverside, CA home. Ekaterina has been creating art from a young age leading her to earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Oregon. She is now working as a full-time artist and muralist. Ekaterina has shown her work at The Artlands, in Redlands, and at Gramercy Art Gallery the as part of group shows. She is a member at the Eastside Arthouse and is involved in public art projects including a recent mural for Beautify Riverside. Recently Ekaterina has exhibited in the Not Made for Exposure group art show at the Eastside Arthouse and has a solo art show at A Blve Rose, in Downtown Riverside which will be on display during April Riverside Artswalk.
Ekaterina has been participating at the Riverside Artswalk since 2017 when there was a special Artswalk as part of the Saturation Art & Music Festival in Downtown Riverside. With the recent announcement of a future artists in residency programs in Riverside, she sees the arts in Riverside growing and believes that artists are feeling more supported. Ekaterina would love to see more art studios built into the planned housing endeavors and the development of more art festivals like Saturation Fest that bring different art disciplines together. Art has allowed Ekaterina to speak on her own experience and connect with others in the community who have had similar journeys. She hopes to show others that you can be a successful working artist in the Inland Empire and Riverside while inspiring others to be creative and tell their own story.
For Ekaterina, art allows her to be herself, and gives her a voice - as someone who is bi that was also born in another country, she often finds it difficult to balance between being herself and fitting in. At the same time, art has allowed her to speak on her journey through motherhood. Through her art, Ekaterina can create a space where all of her emotions and stories can live and connect with others who may feel the same. She is inspired by fairy tales, motherhood, the natural world, nostalgia, femininity as well as themes related to her heritage. One of Ekaterina’s preferred artistic mediums is watercolor. It is naturally a slower paced medium to work with, so it could take hours or days to create and complete an art piece. She typically spends a lot of time on research, color swatching, and composition so that when it comes time to paint - all the hard decisions have been made.
In the future she hopes to work on more mural projects and being a mural artist through Beautify Riverside has allowed Ekaterina to interact with the community directly and see how much people want to support local artists and how needed the arts are in the city. While she was working on the mural, she saw faces light up as they happened upon the mural on their daily commute. While painting the mural, she saw that it truly now belonged to the people in that community and created pride in our community.