Petr Grigorev, who came to Barton Community College as an international student almost four years ago, is exhibiting five of his works in the display cases in the college’s Fine Arts Building.
Grigorev came from Vladivostok, Russia, to Barton to study business and play tennis, but soon found his true calling as an artist. He had never taken an art class before entering one of Barton art instructor Steve Dudek’s classes. He credits the instructor for helping him develop his artist talent.
"He just took the class as an extra credit, for fun," Dudek said. "But we found out he had a lot of talent."
Since that first class, Grigorev has continued to develop his art and has won numerous awards in many area art exhibits. In 2010, one of his paintings was accepted in the National Watercolor Society’s 90th Annual Open Exhibition. Along with acceptance in this prestigious exhibition comes an invitation to submit additional paintings to be reviewed by a panel of NWS jurors. Grigorev submitted the additional works and was accepted as a Signature Member of the society.
He is exhibiting one of those paintings with this show in the Fine Arts display cases. The watercolor titled "Roads" is a dimensional surrealistic painting similar in style to the painting accepted in the NWS exhibition. Grigorev has been accepted to attend the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia, where he hopes eventually to study.
He is staying in Barton County for now, working to help finance his education at the Savannah art college. In addition, he is working to attain U.S. citizenship. He and his wife, Jessica Herl Grigoreva, reside in Ellinwood.
His exhibit of two watercolors and three digital photographs will continue through mid May in the college’s fine arts display cases.