Being an artist is a rollercoaster of emotion. At times, it can be a dream. Other times, a nightmare. Then there’s everything in between, the rushes of excitement and steep creative blocks. In a way, this can also be used to describe what it is like being a young person today, and particularly a young artist striving to make it in the industry.
For 25-year-old Veronika Osipova, also known as Render Agent, being an artist and being a young person are intertwined. They both feed into each other and exist simultaneously. As an artist, she’s explored architecture, fashion, and 3-D modelling. Since November 2020, her Instagram has been very busy, exhibiting her renders of 3-D models wearing Italian high fashion brand MiuMiu’s SS2021 collection and alien-like humanoids in surreal environments. Miu Miu is described as Prada Group’s most creative brand that intentionally aims for a look that is far from the traditional aesthetic portraying a contemporary femininity. Osipova is a contemporary young woman herself and her work irradiates this. Womanhood is one of the lenses by which she experiences life, she says.
As a person, Osipova’s work has also explored other concepts extremely personal to her such as growing up and moving from her home town of Minsk in Belarus to Prague, Czechia (where she’s now lived for a little over five years). In an interview with Chimera, Osipova said that leaving Belarus, which has experienced political upheaval in recent years after citizens who took to the streets to protest rigged elections were met with severe police brutality, was a good experience for her despite her initial difficulties in making new friends, getting used to a different environment, and learning to speak Czech. She probably wouldn’t recognise her home city of Minsk if she were to return, she says, looking back on how it used to be. Not with so many restaurants and cafés being closed and so many of her friends having moved abroad. However, she remains hopeful that Belarus, which has been ruled by Alexander Lukashenko since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, who has been the country’s president for the entirety of Osipova’s life, will follow in Russia’s footsteps and become more liberal.
It’s evident she’s experienced quite a lot of change and growth in the past few years, and Osipova has found a welcoming and diverse community in the world of 3-D art. Her work, consisting of dreamscapes and most recently avatars, is influenced by femininity, nature, and everyday life. It has found a home in @digi-qxl, a global community for women, trans, and non-binary artists specialising in digital design, 3-D, and X Reality. Among artists that inspires her she lists Russian multimedia artist Sasha Katz (from whom she took a 2-week online course last summer in which she learnt how to use Cinema 4D and received feedback from Katz), Argentinian 3-D artist Clara Luzian’s (a.k.a Render Fruit) surrealist, technological works, the intricate storytelling of Max Guther’s hyperreal slices of life, and 3-D designer Harriet Blend’s array of disparate characters. Fashion is also a passion of Osipova and she is a proud member of the Institute of Digital Fashion, a collective that blends fashion with digital mediums. Among her favourite projects was a collaboration with other multidisciplinary artists and students, whose enthusiastic approach to experimenting she found refreshing, to make a 3-D movie for the Amsterdam Fashion Institute. This was the first time she did avatar modelling and she said that she looks forward to working with more clothing brands in the future.
Izanami /伊弉冉尊 , “she who invites”
Osipova has also taken inspiration from quarantine and how it resulted in a large amount of “social noise” online when no longer able to socialise outside, most took to social media 24/7. Osipova was sick of it, the endless stream of likes, comments, texts and calls. So she turned that sentiment into art. “Sick of Notifications,” literally shows a person drowning in notifications. This feeling can be seen in the lighting of these works, in all of which you can see a purple-blue light that resembles that of a screen. Osipova says that she likes to keep her pieces open to interpretation, but this light sets the mood and helps reveal the axial theme. In her pieces tackling the enhanced reality that is social media, particularly heightened during quarantine, the humanoids in them have an inorganic quality. Their skin is shiny, metallic. By making it so, Osipova seems to suggest a certain fakeness or inauthenticity of online interactions, especially those on social media. This is seen in another piece that shows a person drinking from a milkshake plastic container with various emojis inside and the title warning against consuming fake emotions.
The endless possibility of the future is always at the forefront of Osipova’s mind and her work. She described her process of creating new art to Chimera as being never quite the same. With every project, she likes to experiment with different techniques and tools, forming herself as an ever-stronger artist. Currently, she is working on avatars that combine her love of fashion with 3-D modelling. Her pieces depict beings who look like they live in a fantasy world, dressed in futuristic and brilliantly coloured clothes. In one the humanoid has pointy elven ears, while in another, the humanoid is wrapped in and fused with a blue boa constrictor. To look at these pieces is an altogether surreal experience, much like looking at the rest of Osipova’s work, characterised by a desaturated colour palette contrasted by shades of neon, a strong focus on the human body, and hyper-realistic style.
Kiyoko /清子, “pure child” - Chimera's exclusive avatar
Asked about the future of digital art, Osipova predicts a “spark of progress,” where more and more schools will take up teaching it to meet a demand of more people getting into it that will culminate in 3-D art being everywhere in ten years. Additionally, she theorises that while artificial intelligence’s relevance will increase, there will always be people who will stick to analogue art forms like crafts. Osipova herself has found herself drawn to ceramics and is excited to try it out. In fact, she isn’t looking to get married to a single form of art as there are so many she is yet to try out. “I want to concentrate on being a multidisciplinary artist and making 3D art,” she clarifies. In ten years she sees herself either in a studio of her own, as part of a collective, or working in a creative agency.
That is after she finishes her master’s degree in Architecture. Osipova is very excited about the future, even contemplating a change of scenery. She is at another crossroads of change, so where will she go next? A possible answer might be found in her reply to the interviewer’s last question for her: How would you describe your art in one word? Straightaway, Osipova answers, “Dream.”