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Reading to Minnie Hand-Embellished Giclee on Canvas by Irene Sheri is signed by the artist and comes with a certificate of authenticity.
Irene Sheri was born in the city of Belgorod-Dnestrovsky, Ukraine in 1968. Her mother was Bulgarian, father French. Her art career started when Irene's older brother Vasily, then 9, was given as a birthday present a set of paints. And Irene was told NOT TO TOUCH THEM! Those paints became an object of desire for her, almost an obsession. She stole them, mixed them, painted on paper, walls, on her dress and on the bodies of her friends. She was 4 years old. At age 9, and thousands of paintings behind her, Ms. Sheri started her art classes at the Belgorod Art School for gifted children, and at age 15 graduated both from her junior high and art school, both as valedictorian. Rather than going to High School like most teenagers, Ms. Sheri entered Grecov College of Art in the city of Odessa, Ukraine. During her first year in the junior college, she entered and won a citywide juried exhibition "Young Artist of the year". Since that time and during her two years in the junior college, the artist entered and won fourteen juried exhibitions, and at the end of her second year, received a special "excellence in art" award from the Mayor. At age seventeen, Ms. Sheri was accepted into the Serov School of Fine Art in St Petersburg, Russia. All paintings and sketches that she created during her three years of study at the college are now used by the faculty as samples of brilliant academic achievement. In 1988, a year after she moved to St Petersburg, Ms. Sheri was enrolled in a summer practice at the Museum of Wooden Architecture with a group of other students. On the last day of the practice all of the students went to the museum to show their work to the public before delivering them to their school for grading. The museum curator told tourists that they could purchase any students' work they liked. An hour later, all twelve of Ms. Sheri s pieces were gone. Not one piece by the other students was purchased. Angry and envious, the students told Ms. Sheri that she was supposed to turn her twelve paintings in to the school, and the money she earned will certainly be the last professional earnings she ever made. The students told her she would probably be expelled from the college for not turning her work in. Two days later Irene submitted twelve more paintings and was the only student to receive an "A" for this practice. In 1990, Ms. Sheri graduated valedictorian from the Serov College, and was asked to stay at the School of Fine Art to teach gifted children. She received an apartment for her outstanding achievement and studio to work in. Two years later, she into entered one of the most prestigious art schools in the world, the St Petersburg Academy of Art named after Repin. In 2000, her graduation artwork was accepted into the permanent collection of the Museum of Academy of Art, and a year later, the same painting, "Early snow" (78" x 80") received the highest honor an artist can receive in Russia, the "Russian State Award for Outstanding achievement in Art or Entertainment". Ms. Sheri s works are in collections of such prominent collectors as musician Mstislav Rastropovich, ex-St Petersburg Mayor Anatoly Sobchak, oil tycoon Leo Vaisberg to name a few. In 2002, Ms. Sheri was invited to take part in all-Russian juried exhibition "Youth of Russia", and again, as it was each time she entered juried exhibitions, she received first prize and special commendations. Her artwork is sold and presented by galleries and dealers in France, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Russia, Ukraine, Finland, and the US. Mr. Sheri has a daughter, age 12, who already showing early signs of a very talented artist.