Based in Devonport, Auckland, Ilya Volykhine is a critically acclaimed New Zealand figurative artist.
His long list of accolades includes being a finalist in the upcoming 2023 Molly Morpeth Canaday Award, a finalist in the 2016 Adam Portraiture Award, as well as, in the 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2021 Walker & Hall Art Awards, where he has won for his figurative art. His international accolades include work in the Archibald Prize at the Art Gallery of New South Wales and the Blake Prize for Religious Art, the Jacaranda Drawing Prize in Australia, as well as, the Imago Mundi New Zealand Collection in Italy.
Ilya was born in the USSR and he and his family have lived all over the world; Ilya has exhibited and held residencies worldwide, from New York to Estonia. Since moving to New Zealand in 2009, Ilya has exhibited throughout New Zealand in both solo and group exhibitions. Similarly, his artwork can be found in numerous private, public, and corporate collections worldwide.
Ilya Volykhine’s paintings are darkly comic, sometimes poetic, the characters within his pictures battling their way through the anxieties and joys of life, and his narratives are loose, playful and chaotic. What lies at the heart of his paintings is Volykhine’s intuitive process, his willingness and confidence to allow the story to unfold as he paints, with his expressive brushwork opening up a space for his characters to breathe, to take on a life yet unexplored.