Irina was born in 1961, in a small Southern Russian town near the Black Sea. From an early age, she remembers having big city dreams that manifested twice. First, when she got accepted into the prestigious Muhina Institute of Art and Design in St. Petersburg, Russia, receiving her education and classical training in Fine Art & Industrial Design. Her second big city dream came true when she moved to New York at the age of 30. Although life was fairly comfortable thus far, in America is where Irina was faced with some obstacles. Having to work in textile design – a new industry that she had to learn on the spot, while also learning English, was not easy, but Irina was very persistent. After 20+ years of freelancing in textile design, she acquired many new skills, but felt that the commercial approach of this industry was diminishing her artist’s soul. When the recession hit, Irina’s work was put on hold, but she found herself back in her studio doing what she loved most using traditional materials that spoke to her, while exploring new techniques such as painting with coffee and ink. Her artworks became her refuge, her diary and the display of her inner workings. Irina’s artistic focus is her observation of the human condition and human nature. You can find her daily sketches posted on her Instagram.