The precocious lad, who had won second place in a drawing contest while only six years old, was the son of educators who both worked for the government.
Solomoukha later entered the Faculty for the Restoration of Icons in the Kiev School of Fine Art and was awarded a diploma in 1973 as a "monumentalist" painter. He soon came to the attention of political censors and was several times summoned to appear before the KGB for his dissident expression.
He consequently emigrated to Paris with his wife in 1978 and has lived there ever since.
Turning from the brush and easel to the camera, the artist has more recently become known for sweeping, operatic photographs based on famous canvases by Caravaggio, Ingres, Botticelli, Delacroix, and other masters.
Solomoukha's stunning series of surreal images titled "Little Red Riding Hood Visits the Grand Louvre" and "Little Red Riding Hood Visits Chernobyl" will make their stateside debut.
The works are on view at the freshly minted Black Square Gallery, which is operated by Russian dealer Anna Milashevych and her Venezuelan partner, Ron Kritzler. Their gallery is named after the sooty opus of Kazimir Malevich, an artist and theorist, that became an early symbol of abstract and conceptual art.
The gallery's stable will feature mostly Russian and Eastern European contemporary work. It's not just leading edge, it's bleeding edge.
Tuesdays-Sundays, 11 a.m. Starts: Oct. 14. Continues through Oct. 30, 2010