Since its launch in 2011 RUSSIAN ART+CULTURE has become the world’s most popular and comprehensive website dedicated to Russian culture – ranked Number 1 Website on Google for Russian Art, and voted one of the UK’s Top Ten Arts & Culture Blogs at the 2014 and 2016 UK Blog Awards.
RUSSIAN ART+CULTURE was founded by Theodora Clarke and since October 2016 has got a new owner: British art collector and art professional Natasha Butterwick. Along with our daily event-listings, our unique blend of articles – interviews, features, book/film/concert/theatre reviews, art fair and auction reports – attract over 10,000 on-line visitors per month, and this number is constantly growing exponentially. Content is updated on a daily basis on the website and in social media (Facebook, Instagram, and over 25,000 followers on Twitter). Readers range from students and leading academics to the media, art professionals, art collectors and international businessmen. Throughout the year we host seminars, lectures, film screenings, conferences and organise private art tours. In 2014 we published the UK-Russia Year of Culture magazine and, in 2015, commissioned the first-ever in-depth analysis of the Russian Auction Market – an invaluable and much-quoted source of reference for art professionals and the media. RA+C has regularly featured in The Times, Daily Telegraph, Financial Times, The Art Newspaper, Huffington Post, Blouin ArtInfo, The Moscow Times and RIA Novosti – and on the BBC.
RUSSIAN ART+CULTURE publishes the Official Guide to Russian Art Week in London, coinciding with the June and November auctions of Russian Art at Sotheby’s, Christie’s, MacDougall’s and Bonhams – which attract Anyone Who’s Anyone in the Russian art world. The Guide is available across London free of charge – from the Courtauld Institute to the Russian Embassy via the Saatchi Gallery, leading auction houses, business centres, restaurants and de luxe hotels, including The Dorchester, Claridge’s and the Ritz. Russian Art Weeks is usually inaugurated with Gala Evening at a prestige Mayfair location attended by journalists, key players in the art world, and members of the Russian business and diplomatic élite.
This year RUSSIAN ART+CULTURE announced new plans for development and expanding its coverage to contemporary Russian art, art law and for running a number of new ambitious projects.
Owner, Natasha Butterwick
Natasha has over 20 years experience in the art world in Russia and the UK. She graduated from the Moscow State Institute of Economics and Statistics (Engineering and Mathematics), and then she studied Fine and Decorative Art at Christie’s Education after moving in London in 2001. She established a fine art business in Moscow dealing in applied arts, Russian paintings and drawings of 19th- and 20th-centuries. She is an avid art collector and is passionate about music, literature and psychology. Her recent acquisition of RA&C fits well with her extensive range of contacts and personal interests. She speaks Russian (native), English (fluent) and Italian (basic).
Editor, Irene Kukota
Irene Kukota was born in Moscow, studied ancient and modern languages and history of art. She also holds a degree from the University of Oxford, where she completed her M.St. focussing on Syria and Byzantium in Late Antiquity in 2001. Between 2005 – 2008 she held responsibilities as the secretary of the Oxford Byzantine Society, taught Russian and Russian philosophy at Oxford and later acted as consultant for the film the Shroud of Turin: Material Evidence aired on BBC2 on 22nd March 2008. Between 2007 and 2010 Ms Kukota also worked as cataloguer, translator and consultant for the Icons and Works of Russian Art Departments at Christie’s. Ms Kukota also received an MA in Fine and Decorative Arts from Sotheby’s Institute of Art in 2010 ( her dissertation was about Walter Savage Landor as collector) and is author of numerous articles in both English and Russian. She lectured at Sotheby’s Institute of Art between 2009 -2013 and has been collaborating with curators at the Royal Collection (Russian art) and the Kremlin Museums since 2014.
Between 2012 – 2016 she worked as London- based representative for the Art Newspaper Russia and acted as a journalist, researcher, lecturer, conference and events manager.
COO, Katya Belayeva
Katya runs Russian Art and Culture on a day-to-day basis and is responsible for its operational and market development. She has run several businesses in the arts sector in Russia and the UK after an earlier career in the financial sector. Katya has a MA in Economics from Finance University, Moscow and since receiving an MA in Art History from Christie’s Education, she has provided professional services to a number of galleries. She speaks Russian (native) and English (fluent).