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Pepelangelo

Limited Edition Print

«Pepe Storming the Federal Reserve Building»

Prints

Who is Pepelangelo?

Pepelangelo? Who is this?
My name is Olga Vishnevskaya, I am 29 years old, I was born in the city of Kovrov, it is a small city with many military industries three hours from Moscow, but now I live in Tbilisi, Georgia. I have been drawing and painting since 2017, when Pepelangelo was born as a project and a phenomenon.
Why are you painting Pepe?
It's a very long story. In 2017, I had no job and lived in a terrible apartment on the outskirts of St. Petersburg, now I understand that I was in a deep depression. I decided to take drawing lessons from a teacher friend of mine so that I would have at least some reason to leave the house. At first, my drawings were terrible and I failed everything I did, I often cried during the lessons. Then we decided to start working with color - I made watercolor still lifes from life. It became more fun. For my birthday, my grandmother sent me a present - two of her old canvases. One was with Jesus and the other had a vase of irises. My grandmother is not an artist and she did not feel sorry for her work. She suggested to overpaint it with something. I know that since ancient times artists learn by copying the Old Masters, copying classical art. I decided to copy the portrait of Philip II by Anthonis Mor. But drawing a human head is very difficult - it consists of many shapes, in addition, every day we see human's faces and even the slightest mistake in the drawing becomes visible - the portrait becomes ugly or frightening. Therefore, I decided to draw not a human head, but a frog's head. After all, Pepe was originally a 2d character and his head design is quite primitive. It seemed to me to embody this head in volume and make it more realistic is a good task for such an aspiring artist like me. So I copied the costume but added Pepe's head. I did not plan to make money from this, for me it was an exercise in developing the skills of a draftsman and painter. The portrait came out very funny and I decided to make a few - to give to my friends for the New Year, because I had almost no work and money.
What is Pepe to you?
In my youth, I was a regular visitor to anonymous imageboards, and there I saw some Pepe memes. In the Russian-speaking segment of the Internet, he has always been a symbol of loneliness, melancholy and bright sadness, he has never had a political context. Of course, I had a folder on my desktop with my favorite Pepes. Later, Pepe became for me a set of geometric shapes - here is light, and here is shadow. Here is yellow and here is green. And now his head is turned and the light falls in a different place ... Pepe has become my artist's training equipment. At some point, I was terribly tired of green paint, people only wanted Pepe paintings from me. It seemed to me that I was trapped, that I was a prisoner of Pepe. Now Pepe for me is a whole layer of culture and a huge community. In such a short time, Pepe's existence has become such a complex cultural phenomenon that it can no longer be explained in a small text. I'm glad to be a small part of this story.
Why are the paintings so expensive and what should I do now?
Fortunately or unfortunately, oil painting is quite an expensive thing. But you can leave it as a legacy to your grandchildren))) To create a painting you need a lot of space. You need light, a stretcher, canvas, brushes and paints, an easel. Also, painting takes time - the work is carried out in many stages. After each layer I wait for it to dry to continue working, sometimes it can take 7-10 days for the layer to dry, sometimes it happens faster. Of course, in 6 years I have become a faster artist 🙂 But almost any painting still requires weeks. As a rule, I always have several paintings in the work at the same time. Sometimes I work on 20 paintings at once. And I'm trying not to go crazy. In order not to work on 50 paintings at the same time and not end up in a mental hospital, I raised the prices. I know that many people would still like to have my Pepe at home, so I sell canvas prints. But it's not just prints! For each print, I add a few different strokes of oil paint to make the print more alive and unique. In addition, often these strokes are voluminous and from a distance this print is very similar to real oil painting.
What are your plans for the future?
I dream of an exhibition, but for this I should stop taking too much orders and to find someone who is a very good organizer of events. I would like to learn what frogs and toads mean in different cultures. I would like to analyze the myths and fairy tales of different peoples of the world where frogs are involved and create different art about it. Not only painting - but also stained glass, dolls, panels, illustrations, sculptures. I also love working from life. I would like to paint more nude models from life.
Pepe in Russia and in the world
It was a big surprise for me when I found out that Pepe has a political context. It is very difficult for some people to imagine this, but not everything revolves around the political agenda in the United States. I tried to never do overtly political paintings with Pepe. The exception was the case of the Hong Kong Parliament. But then I was really struck by the history of the protests in Hong Kong. It was something alive and real. Many now associate Pepe with the NFT. I am very interested in what will happen to Pepe in 10 years.
What else do you paint besides Pepe?
Sometimes I do ceremonial portraits of pets. Sometimes I have some energy and free time to do something for my own pleasure - then these are portraits of people from life.
Are you doing something else or is this your main job?
Pepelangelo is my full time job. Painting itself is not 100 percent of my time - there is also communication with customers, maintaining social networks, purchasing materials, searching for references, taking photos and videos. I also opened a bar in St. Petersburg, but now I don’t manage it, my friend does it for me. It does not bring money, only expenses))
What do you think about art and the NFT?
I don't think NFT will disappear as a phenomenon. But the rules of the game will change. I think that now we are like monkeys who were given a computer - we lick it and just hit the buttons, and yet we do not understand its potential.
Where I can see your work?
Unfortunately, my works are not in museums. They are all in private collections. You can follow me on Instagram and Twitter or the Russian-language social network (http://vk.com/pepelangelo) maybe there is some rare content there. Also, many of my works can be easily found in a Google search.
I want to order a painting but I don't know how it works
Email me. It will be great if you describe your idea for painting or write what size of painting you would like or write your budget. If you have no ideas - think about your favorite characters in movies, books, games. Please don't worry about shipping. I deliver any painting to any country in the world. However, be prepared that you will receive the painting rolled up - this is the safest and only true way to transport the painting. And the most inexpensive.

Contact

My name is Olga Vishnevskaya and I live and work in Georgia. You can order an original oil Pepe painting or something else - not oil or not Pepe. Anyway, welcome!