"Let everything happen to you:
Beauty and terror.
Just keep going.
No feeling is final".
                                                                                                             Rainer Maria Rilke
    Mikhail Ray is a multidisciplinary artist and curator from Kherson, Ukraine. He was born on February 22, 1984 in a family of former ship's cooks, graduated the Maritime College and served at sea as a Deck Officer. In search of satisfaction he started to engage in photography. At first it was nothing more than a hobby, until he saw realistic digital photo collages. The ability to synthesize his own images, instead of reflecting through the surrounding reality, quickly captured his full attention. He finally got the right tools to recreate his inner world and transform it, thus his interest in traditional photographic practice was finally lost. He began to discover hidden facets of his own consciousness and this pushed him to find answers in psychology and religions. Shortly before the full scale Russian invasion in Ukraine, he gave up with his maritime career he had been building for over 20 years and intended to live a life, creating art that could awaken people. On February 24, 2022 life began to challenge him. He decided to stay in Kherson, his native city, which was occupied by Russian forces, and fight for freedom with the power of his art. This decision unexpectedly brought him to the answers he was looking for. To proof that Paradise (Ray in Ukrainian) is not a place, but a state of consciousness.
During occupation of Kherson he gave interviews to BBC and number of Ukraininan, US and Taiwanese journalists about his art and situation in the city and took part in numerous exhibitions in Ukraine, Europe, USA and Asia. His artworks are held in private collections in USA, Netherlands & Ukraine.
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