Iakov Afanassiev was born in Russia and has lived in Canada since 1995 where he started a professional art career. He is influenced by realistic Eastern European art, to which he was exposed as a child in museums in Moscow, St. Petersburg and elsewhere in Russia. Now Iakov follows the classical tradition in his work. He uses traditional materials of oil on canvas. His works include portraits, landscapes, figurative and still life paintings. Iakov is represented by the Leyton Gallery of Fine Art in St. John’s.

Iakov’s interest in painting began with the fine art of portraiture. He says “A human face is perhaps the ultimate subject of painting throughout the entire history of art. There is an incredible beauty in every person and the goal of an artist is to capture it. Whenever I have a chance to see the works of Old Masters I try and learn from them. My goal is to create a work of art which will stand a test of time and will last in your family for many generations.”

Iakov’s portrait commissions include a portrait of Hon. John C. Crosbie, Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador, Chancellor of Memorial University as well as private commissions. Iakov’s portrait/figurative works were recognized in the competitions by the Artist’s Magazine and Canadian Brushstroke Magazine as well as by Newfoundland and Labrador Arts and Letters award.

Iakov enjoys the beauty of Newfoundland’s landscapes and tries to portray it in his paintings in a realistic yet somewhat impressionistic style. His landscape paintings are in the collections of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, of the city of St. John’s as well as in private collections in Canada and abroad.

Iakov’s still lifes are realistic renditions of arrangements of everyday objects or flowers. The colors of the objects are complimented and enhanced by the shades of the background. Iakov’s still lifes are popular among art collectors.