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Albena Hristova artwork

Albena Hristova

Albena Hristova was born in Bulgaria in Eastern Europe. Her mother, a restorer of the National Gallery in Sophia, was a major influence in her childhood and inspired a career in art. She obtained a Master's Degree in mural painting from the Academy of Fine Arts in Sofia. She currently lives in California with her family. For her, everything starts with seeing. "I feel that my mission is to help people open their eyes to the beauty around us. Our hectic lives make it hard to see this beauty, but is it so wonderful when you finally do". She has drawn inspiration from the different cultures and nature that she has encountered on her travels around the world.
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What does art mean to you?

Visual Art is a different point of view. It is an opportunity to see the world at large and to the minutest details through the eyes of the artist. I, as an artist, expose my perception of any subject matter enriched with my own emotions and experiences to the viewer. I give you my eyes through my hands. As such art is extremely personal.
"Art is a reflection of the infinite diversity of humanity. For me, art is a door from my soul to yours."

Why did you create the Faces of the Earth series?

It was a close encounter with Mother Nature that created the Faces of the Earth. We were climbing a peak next to Machu Picchu in Peru. The trail was extremely narrow and unsafe and I was excited and afraid at the same time. At one point of time my face was a couple of inches away from the face of a rock and I was hanging on for dear life. In all my panic, suddenly, my vision focused on this surface and I realized how beautiful it was. I promised to myself that when I am back, I will put it on canvas and that is how it all started. This new discovered point of view is endless and I can't paint fast enough to get all the images from our travels on canvas.
Faces of the Earth

How does nature affect what you paint?

I enjoy nature in all of its forms and expressions. With Faces of the Earth I opened a new chapter of my perception of nature. My new relation to nature is very close and personal. It is a discovery process of natural forms and colors that many times remain hidden from the naked eye of the observer. The abstract style is the closest characterization to what I do. I came up with the name of Earthstracts - abstracts inspired by nature.
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If I could send you somewhere today to paint, where would you go?

There is this amazing place in China where colors are from another planet. I would go there.
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Who is your biggest artistic influence today?

Throughout my life as an artist I have been searching for my uniqueness, my own voice, my own style and expression. I went through 12 years of classical art training which gave me all the tools to be able to express anything that crosses my imagination. I am very grateful to all the classic masters for this. As a young artist, I was influenced by the German expressionist of the 20th century, because it had the tragic notes that related so close to my experience of living behind the Iron Curtain. I created a large body of work under this influence and it was all snatched by collectors in Europe. Since I came to the USA, I made my own discovery of the New World of Happiness and started developing my own style to fit this new emotional state. I feel I have succeeded and I am at a stage of my career as an artist when I want to think that I am the influencer.
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