Bogdan Mihai Radu
FIRST PRIZE BEST ARTIST AWARDS WINNER
OXFORD INTERNATIONAL ART FAIR 2018
It was springtime, irises’ season, when Bogdan Mihai Radu was born in Sibiu (Hermannstadt), on the 2nd of March, 1979, in Tălmaciu, where he also spent his childhood and discovered its passion for art.
At a very early age, Bogdan saw a movie that captivated him: the main characters stole highly-prized paintings from museums or private collections, which they would replace by very well-executed replicas, without the owners ever realizing the theft, took place. It was this intricate yet creative plot that opened the door to the art world for the future artist. Fascinated with the movie, he borrowed his grandma’s and some relatives’ paintings, allegedly needing them for school, and then he reproduced each one of them and returned his beautifully executed replicas, in an echo of the script that enthralled him. Just like in the movie, none of his family suspected the trick of the young artist. In a deep contrast to his artistic abilities, he was enrolled by his family in a local high school, dedicated to the study of railways and rail issues. Fortunately, he never gave up on the artistic studies, and chose to attend Friedrich Müller’s college classes, becoming certified as an art therapist. It was at this time that he started volunteering with several centers for disabled children. Thus, contaminated by the children’s authenticity and easiness, and delighted by the obvious improvement of their health under the miraculous effect of colors, Bogdan took the much needed courage to follow an artistic path.
Consequently, he held his first solo show in 2002 – “Past Shrouded in Shadow and Color” at Casa Ille et Villaine – an event which gathered many appreciative opinions among the artistic community of Sibiu. One year later, he became a member of the Sibiu branch of the Union of Fine Artists which endorsed his name in a group exhibition at „Atelier 35” gallery and created an opportunity for a new personal exhibition, called “Reflections”, opened at Atelier 202 in Apoldu de Sus. Casa Luxemburg (The Luxemburg House) was in 2004 the ideal space for the public to get a taste of the “Flavours of Sibiu” exhibition, the same way the Cisnădie City Hall became a hospitable place for another solo show, entitled “Plunged into color”. In 2005, Bogdan was one of the winners of the “Young talents” contest organised by “Arte e Arta” Foundation, swiftly followed up by a group exhibition at the “Ion Dacian” National Theatre of Operetta in Bucharest.
During the same year, his hometown hosted his personal exhibition of watercolors named “Contrast and color”. In 2006 he returned to the capital city to take part in a group show at the Comedy Theatre called “Angels and Saints”. He was then selected to take part in a painting camp in Balchik, Bulgaria. This event on the Black Sea side was the catalyst for an exhibition in the following autumn adequately named “The Queen Mary’s Heart”, organised in the “Carol the First” Central University Library premises in Bucharest. He was rewarded with a scholarship at the renowned School of Barbizon, a symbol of excellence in painting. „Queen Mary” became, eventually, the theme of a new exhibition during the Astra Film Festival in Sibiu (2006).
2007 was a landmark year for Bogdan: the year when he was admitted to the Fine Arts Faculty in Cluj-Napoca. The study years became a string of creative workshops and exhibitions, such as the ones at Café del Sol, the „Bogdan, Mihai, and Radu” exhibition at The Students’ Culture House in Cluj-Napoca and the one named “It’s tiring to be a painter” in the unconventional space of Green Hours in Bucharest. The Cluj-Napoca period is defined by the countless yet happy hours he spent in the maestro Corneliu Brudaşcu’s workshop. In 2008, Bogdan surprised the art lovers in Transylvania with two more shows: “Spring notes” and “Eclectic transfer” at the Atlas Gallery in Oradea. He also marked the 90th anniversary of the National Day of Romania in U.S.A., with some works being presented during the Festival of the Romanian Diaspora.
In 2009, Bogdan Mihai Radu returned to Bucharest, where he set up two new exhibitions at the World Trade Centre (“Moments”, August 2009) and at the Intercontinental Hotel (April 2010). It was at the latter event that the art critic Irina Cajal said: “He’s got this talent of knowing how to make art of this miracle. I ask you to forgive me for not being able to put this in words, but all I can say is that Bogdan’s paintings make me feel and think of the classical Corneliu Baba, but also of those signed by Mircea Ciobanu or Margareta Sterian.” Bogdan Mihai Radu’s works are part of private collections and museums of contemporary art, both in Romania and abroad (Germany, the Netherlands, U.S.A., France, Poland, United Kingdom, Belgium etc.).