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Sailing Away, a New Exhibition Featuring Artist Slava TCH at Lanning Gallery in Sedona, Arizona

A Happy Land by Slava TCH, encaustic on canvas, 12”h x 12”w. At Lanning Gallery in Sedona, Arizona."A Happy Land" by Slava TCH, encaustic on canvas, 12”h x 12”w. At Lanning Gallery in Sedona, Arizona.

Sedona, AZ: Lanning Gallery in Sedona, Arizona opens a new exhibition to unveil the latest luminous and imaginative encaustic paintings by renowned artist Slava TCH. The exhibition opens with a reception “1st Friday” evening, June 3rd, from 5-8 pm.

Not many artists have the skills to master the challenging technique of encaustic but Slava TCH (full name Viatcheslav Tchstiline) came to the medium as an accomplished artist. He was born into a Russian family in which an older brother and an uncle were artists and TCH began painting when he was just nine years old. He studied fine art at Kharkov State University, in the Ukraine, and studied painting decorative art and interior design at the Kharkov Artistic-Industrial Institute; a Master of Fine Arts from the Ukrainian Academy of Arts followed. During the early years of his career, Slava TCH painted with oil on canvas in a realistic manner; he travelled to France, Germany and Holland and explored painting in the style of Dutch Art realism; he participated at many group and solo exhibitions; was involved in painting monumental murals and also taught art. Many of his realistic paintings are in public collections in Germany and France and in private collections around the world.

It was after immigrating to Canada in 1995 with his wife, the painter Natalia Tchstilina, and their daughter, that Slava Tch changed direction completely. He began using the ancient encaustic method, with its sculptural potential, to create rich, luminous worlds of rolling landscapes. In these worlds, neo-primitivism and abstract symbolism combine to express a yearning by TCH for the ideal. The places he now depicts seem at once both mythical and sacramental.

As he settled into his new home he also made the name he painted under easier for his new audience: Slava, in Russian, means Glory and TCH stands for Tone, Color and Harmony. This is the name he is now known by in the art world.

Encaustic painting - the medium is a combination of beeswax and pigment - was practiced by Greek artists as far back as the 5th century B.C. It has always been a complicated process, one that requires skillful preparation of the medium and, in the use of the medium while it is in a heated, liquid state, depends on precise timing and control of temperature for its application.

Mountain Blue Music by Slava TCH, encaustic on wood, 18”h x 18”w. At Lanning Gallery."Mountain Blue Music" by Slava TCH, encaustic on wood, 18”h x 18”w. At Lanning Gallery.

For Slava TCH it is the sculptural potential of the melting wax and luminosity of the pigments that draws him so purely to this singular medium. “It is my passion to work with complicated combinations of color,” he says; “I love to paint red on red or yellow on yellow. Each of my paintings includes numerous tones of one color to convey exactly what my eyes see and my heart feels. The process of painting engulfs me fully, and the melody of my paintings just lifts me up and sweeps me away.”

While all artists can identify a range of influences on their work, in the case of Slava Tch, the collaboration with his late wife, Natalia, is especially noteworthy. Because they saw the world in much the same way, from their aesthetic sensibility to the desire to use art to suggest the ideal, the two often worked closely. Today, the main focus of Slava TCH remains the important harmony of tone and color. And, as always, in each painting, we find his sailboat, ready to carry us away.

Stop by Lanning Gallery to enjoy this newest exhibition and explore the captivating works of Slava TCH. “Sailing Away: The Encaustic Art of Slava TCH” runs through June 12th.

See Lanning Gallery's Facebook page: www.Facebook.com/LanningGallerySedona or visit the gallery on Pinterest. Lanning Gallery, 928-282-6865, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., www.LanningGallery.com. Located at Hozho, 431 S.R. 179, Sedona, AZ. Open daily: 10-6 Mon-Sat; 11-5 Sun.