Sep 30th 2018

Please join us in Booth 463 at EXPO CHICAGO 2018 for a casual artist talk and book signing with Vidvuds Zviedris.


In 2006, Chicago based artist Vidvuds Zviedris lived in Yemen for the year. Wracked by civil war since 2014, the country and its capital, Sana’a have changed drastically since Zviedris was there, though even then, it wasn’t exactly what a Westerner would think of as a tourist destination. But, during this relative peacetime in the country, Zviedris found what he was looking for, artistically, in the capital city, and eventually, beyond: language, culture and faces that were all new to him, and a physical landscape abounding with formal inspiration.

Zviedris is a classically trained painter and a tireless perfectionist, and in his pursuit of a true mastery of his craft, the artist re-dedicated himself to that which is at the core of a painting practice: drawing. Throughout this volume, 26th of September Street, Zviedris’ photographs are interspersed with a selection of his life drawings from that year. Chosen from the piles of Moleskin sketchbooks filled in Yemen, these drawings not only chronicle one man’s experience of becoming at home in a new place, but also of an artist re-establishing the confidence and adeptness of his own hand.

The book opens with images created from the perspective of an outsider: the expanse of the city from a rooftop, figures blurred within the bustling streets, throngs of people going about their days, unconcerned with the artist observing them from the sidelines. Gradually, details unique to Zviedris’ neighborhood surface in the drawings –the graffiti, the goings-on of the alleyways, the decorative patterns that line roofs and windows. By the time intimate portraits of the artist’s neighbors appear, the exquisite mundane of linens drying on the line and shadows cast in the corners become subjects, and Zviedris’ sketchy, labored hand becomes sparse and sure lines, we can tell that the artist is finally has found his rhythm in this place, artistically and personally.

–Robin Dluzen
Artist & Art Critic, 2018

About Vidvuds Zviedris:

Zviedris, originally from Latvia, has enjoyed a successful career as a painter since moving to Chicago in 1999. He has shown with McCormick Gallery since 2002 and has works in many private collections across the country and in Europe. The artist travels extensively having spent time painting in Spain, Mexico, India, Yemen and most recently Italy.

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