Nature Photography & Luxury Fine Art Blog: Surround Art International Fine Art Gallery
In early August 2017, I was contacted by a gentleman named Evgeni Vertkov, who came to America in 1993 and in chasing the American dream, became a citizen. Working in the diamond wholesale business here in the United States he had a lifelong dream to open an Art Gallery in Moscow. The art scene in Russia has had a challenged history but in recent years has began to blossom as different styles of art have entered the scene. During his great levels of success in the diamond industry here in the States, including the launch of various high end jewelry brands he had an opportunity to witness the vibrant, uplifting and beautiful photographic art widely available here in the US. The established art markets both in the United States and Europe presented a challenge to Evgeni and further drove his passion to open his own gallery back in Moscow. Evgeni felt there was a place for this type of art in a country whose own artists in recent history have produced art described as radical and often controvertial in nature. In a country that is often cold and dark, experiencing both a long winter and little sunshine, he felt that bright and vibrant photographic art of our natural world would be pleasing to and of great benefit to the citizens of Moscow and those who travel there.
In the early stages of his research, he planned to host a number of photographic artists in the gallery showing a wide variety of work. Ultimately in the end, he felt a strong connection to just two artists, myself and Brad Wilson, a wildlife photographer based in Los Angeles. Evgeni was looking for artists with work that moved him personally who were already well established with a base of collectors in the US, in an effort to expand their reach into the international market as well as introduce new and exciting art to the citizens, collectors and connoisseurs of his home country. The concept and mission of the gallery was to surround himself with the beauty and positivity he had found in America and to offer this experience to everyone who visits the gallery, providing the opportunity to bring a piece of this dream back home with them to share with their friends and family. With his artists chosen and all of the pieces of his dream falling into place the production of the work and assembly of the gallery began to move forward. Just five short months later and the gallery Surround Art opened it's doors on January 7th, 2018.
"There is so much beauty in the world and so many wonderful artists who capture that magic and translate it through their art. For me personally, the best landscape photographer in the world is hands-down Aaron Reed. By surrounding myself with his photographs I am always connected to the beauty of nature and our earth." - Evgeni Vertkov
With the motto of the gallery being "Quest For Perfection" it is no surprise to find that myself, Evgeni and his gallery director and partner Anastasia, have left no stone unturned creating a visually stunning and luxurious gallery experience for his patrons and everyone fortunate enough to visit Surround Art. Here are a few images of the gallery prior to it opening its doors, as well as some of the fine details of the gallery pieces themselves. The gallery walls and the presentation boxes available to collectors are all finished with alcantara lending it a very luxurious feeling and fine presentation. The prints available in the gallery are all Acrylic Face Mounted pieces ranging in size from 12" to over 84" wide. The display pieces on the walls are 40x60 and available for immediate production and delivery.
Continuing in the current tradition of my work, all of the 30+ pieces of my work permanently for sale within the gallery are limited editions of 200 and all have been signed and numbered by me. Each will come with a Certificate Of Authenticity for additional provenance. The collection of work being offered in Moscow is unique to Surround Art and is not available for sale anywhere else, in Moscow or the US, including directly through me. This is truly a unique collection of work and an opportunity to experience a body of work not available anywhere else in the world. Once our foundation and success is anchored in Moscow, we will be looking to expand this gallery collection to other areas of the world including London and other areas of Europe. This entire experience has been a great deal of fun and it is exciting to see it finally coming together. While I do not look forward to the length of the flight to visit Moscow personally, I just don't see any way can allow such a beautiful presentation of my work to exist without visiting to experience it personally myself.
When is the US Gallery Opening?
This is a great question and the answer feels closer than it ever has before. The area I live in near Seattle, WA doesn't exactly have the type of reoccurring foot traffic that I would need for a gallery to be successful here. I have also always enjoyed being able to offer my work at the most reasonable prices possible here in the States, without occurring the overhead and other operational costs of a gallery. That being said, being a part of this experience and seeing a large body of my work being displayed this way has been drawing me closer and closer to letting my own dreams fly here at home.
If you are a businessman, entrepreneur or gallery owner here in the United States and would like to discuss a similar opportunity to the one I have built here with Evgeni, I am always interested in discussing opportunities to increase the exposure of my work in an effort to share it with more people on a greater scale. If you have an idea, lets chat and see if our dreams can fly together. Below you will find select pieces from the current selection of my work available at Surround Art Gallery. Thank you for taking the time to read this and learn more about me, my work and the international art market.