Born 1932 in Moscow the artist studied in an art studio for youth from 1942 to 1947 and in Moscow at the Grabar Art School for Children from 1949 to 19 51. Having spent 3 years on the artist animator course at the Union Cartoon Studio (Souzmultfilm), Oleg Kudryashov joined the Moscow Organisation of Artists Union in 1961. He was well known in avant-garde art circles but almost never exhibited together with other artists. He emigrated in 1974, burning thousands of his works which he was not allowed to take. The artist lived in London, where he was visited by G. Kostakis who praised the artist’s work, placing him above many of his contemporaries. Oleg Kudryashov has lived in Russia since 1997. The artist creates paintings, drawings, sculptures, videos, linocuts and etchings using dry point on zinc and plastic, also large energetic monochromes (before 1980) and abstract colour compositions. He always makes only one impression. The next one is never the same, as he always adds something to the original drawing. The artist creates three-dimensional compositions out of these colour etchings. He has also made a number of large coloured steel sculptures.
"With the skill of an experienced artisan, who can use his tools with unfailing precision, he has given the visual arts a new dimension. Painting is no longer confined to a flat two-dimensional illusion. In his hands it now conveys a new sense of space. In relief the constructions are animated by light and shadow in a manner that evokes the architecture and the atmosphere that surrounds him. They have the rhythms of the angular shapes of crystals greatly magnified so as to resemble those agglomerations of buildings and parks that constitute a great city."
Sir Roland Penrose
"He is a major artist, who works with a method inimitably his own: drypoint, working directly on industrial zinc plates with his needle, drawing with great speed, printing only one impression , himself, from the plate"
Lady Marina Vaizey
“The Russian art which now ranks as “contemporary” is in many ways more intimately linked to the tradition of Socialist Realism than it is to that of the original Russian avant-garde. An artist like Oleg Kudryashov is very much a maverick in terms of the new Russian art, because his work is abstract, and does relate to the history of Constructivism of the Russian Revolutionary epoch – to Tatlin in particular.”
“Kudryashov is not connected with the Russian dissident art movement... Kudryashov was not one of those artists who manufactured paintings and sold them to foreigners living in Moscow. That lack of compromise with accepted norms and commercial expectations has also characterised his work in the West.”
Dr Christina Lodder, Art Monthly, London
"Than a constructivist, which qualities place him directly in the great tradition of the radical Russian avant-garde of the early decades of the century. That he should have been innocent of such influence until his maturity - for only now are the Russian holdings of such as Kandinsky and Malevich, Tatlin and Lissitzky being brought out of store - and free to express it only in his exile, only makes the affinity the more remarkable."
William Packer, Financial Times, London
"Kudryashov's subject matter is drawn from personal experience and reminiscences, literary sources, the urban environment of London and recollections of the architectural landscape of Moscow. Many are ironic comments on the political system of Russia while others seem to anticipate future events. Visually his work may look different, but to the artist, it springs from the same source; each is about the space he inhabits in his memory."
“Oleg Kudryashov's art is Russian in every sense, without, it seems, the slightest trace of British or Western influence. Indeed, it is of a specific Russian agenda, deeply indebted to the modernist period before Stalin forced artists either to conform to the propagandizing slogans of Socialist Realism's banal figuration , or to abandon art altogether”