Alexander Judin

     Alexander Judin was born in 1955, in city of Tkibuli in the Soviet Union. Mountains surround this city and the picturesque landscape has been the inspiration of many Russian artists through the ages.

     During his teenage years, Judin had many interests and demonstrated his creative abilities in many ways. After school he worked in theater as a scene decorator. He learned to work with papier-mache, making masks and other decorations and also painted scenery for theater set design. As a hobby, he made sculptures of clay and gypsum, later applying his skills to his career as a decorator.

     Judin entered the military after completion of his primary education. During his service, leaders discovered his unique talent and were asked to paint portraits of various military leaders. Two years later, when his military service was completed, he moved to the Russian oil center, the city of Tumen in Siberia. He spent the next 10 years among artists who were from Moscow, St. Petersburg, and other Russian cities. These artists were intrigued and fascinated by the nature and landscape of the wild North. As he and his newly found friends developed their skills in the field of art, they also found a common interest in the restoration of old wooden churches. In this endeavor, Judin devoted himself to wood engraving. He specialized in three-dimensional wooded crosses, frameworks for icons, and statues of saints.

     Judin was absorbed with this work, but could not tolerate the Siberian frosts. He became ill from pneumonia and was hospitalized for six months. This resulted in a loss of his self-confidence, and due to deep depression he ceased working. Gradually, throughout the next year, he regained his enthusiasm, with life through his close relationships with his friends and his strong belief in God.

     He yearned for his native land with the serene landscape of mountains and rushing rivers and returned to the south in 1992. Judin resumed his work as a restorer and participated in reconstruction of churches in Feodosia, Evpatoria, Yalta, and Simpheropol'. He was happy with his recovery, which made him fully appreciate the value of life.

     Judin enjoys using bright colors in his work, lending a festive and joyful experience to the observer. He played the harmonica and has a collection of musical instruments. He thinks music portrays freedom. He carries his harmonica in his pocket at all times, and is sometimes seen playing his favorite tunes in the park or on the street as he walks.

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