Presenting Ruzanna A by Paromov
This is the first Met Art appearance by 19-year-old Ruzanna A. And, after consulting my records, I realize this is only the second erotic gallery photographed by Paramov that I’ve ever reviewed — and the first one was well over two years ago. So I have no experience of the model, and very little of the artist — not precisely a double-debut, but not far off, either.
And right out of the gate I’m very nearly at a loss for words. There is a lot going on in this pictorial — the first frame is packed to the very rafters visually and literally. Ruzanna A makes an excellent first impression, by the way, but it’s the art direction and execution of the photography that has me both dazzled and dumbfounded.
“Painterly” is the first word that comes to mind — and that impression is sustained throughout the set. And this isn’t at all a minimalist or spare style artistic idiom, these images are loaded and layered with detail. In less gifted hands I might describe the costuming and set decoration as cluttered, even chaotic, but Paramov has full control of his concept and executes it with rare skill.
The costuming, alone, offers a welter of fabrics, accessories, and embellishments — layer upon layer of richly textured skirts, a lace wristlet (only one), ribbon, pieces of fur, thick tassels, and what are those on the model’s head? Could they be welder’s goggles? Antique expedition gear? I have no idea, but somehow it works wonderfully together.
And that room? A rusty bed frame, a feathered carnival mask, tapestries on the floor, a mirror leaning against a wall, an empty picture frame, a rickety ladder, a bunch of tall twigs. And smoke? Yes, clouds of smoke drift into the space through the windows along one wall. So much stuff! And yet it all fits, somehow.
Painterly, there’s no better word. If these images were finely wrought in oils on canvas they wouldn’t be at all out of place in a gallery or museum.
Yes, yes — Ruzanna! A plush, curvaceous body, thick, rich, flowing red hair, a fine spray of freckles across her face. Young, yes, but a wonderful effort rising to the challenge of modeling in such a complex tableaux. I’m eager to see more of her, and perhaps a closer view of the details, but, really — this is a most impressive debut and an outright artistic triumph for Paramov. Whether readers agree or disagree, I’d be most interested in hearing your reactions — comments invited.