Usually when an artist puts pencil to paper, that’s when he starts to create his masterpiece. But for Salavat Fidai, paper is out of the equation completely. He has the ability to turn an artists tool into the art itself.
His talent has enabled him to build a following base of 260,000 meaning his miniature sculptures are swept up immediately and purchased, and looking at the fine detail and effort put into each design we can see why…
Being a son of an arts teacher, what was the most valuable lesson your father taught you?
My father and mother taught me to love art. They also taught me to see beauty in simple things. I think the most valuable thing they gave it sincerity and respect for people.
Your first idea to create miniature sculptures from a pencil originated from Dalton Ghetti. Can you recall the story behind your now world famous talent and passion?
I saw a lot of interesting works on the Internet. I was very surprised how you can create such incredible sculptures on such a small scale. So I decided to try to something like that myself.
You once said, ‘Our people love art but there is a big crisis in Russia and art is not a prime necessity for them.” Having a large appeal and customer base in the United States, Europe and Australia but few from your home country, what are your thoughts on the importance of arts and creativity in this capitalist world we live in?
The “capitalist” countries (I usually say “on the West”), love of art is passed from one generation to the next generation. This is due to high culture in civilized countries. Much is due to the financial well-being and satisfaction of basic needs. When a person no longer need to worry about their daily bread, for food, for shelter (housing) about their safety – then this man will surround yourself with comfort and arts. Loving art – it is a manifestation of a civilized and highly developed society.
What has been your most rewarding achievement so far and what is your vision for the future?
Now my parents are proud of me. They did not believe that an artist from Russia could earn money from his art, for the family. I did it. I have proved that this is possible. My greatest achievement – this is the love and respect of my family.
In the future I would like to do an exhibition in USA, Australia and in Europe, as well as in other countries.
In your new book, The Pencilbook, one of the concepts you explain is how to catch inspiration from others. But what exactly inspires you?
I am inspired by the art of great artists. I love the art of Van Gogh, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and many contemporary artists. I do a lot of reading, and go to other artists’ exhibitions. I am inspired by comic books, movies, and books. I am inspired by the music, I love instrumental music, hard rock, blues.
And sometimes it’s my dreams that inspire me…
Header image credit – Virgin Trains/Salavat Fidai