The Artist and her Family

The first 2½ years Natalia spent at an orphanage, then by some miracle she found herself in a real home adopted by a Russian Jewish woman, the kindest human being she has ever met in her life. The adoptive mother loved Natalia as if she were her own child. The family where the child was growing up had given her all necessary knowledge about different matters before she started her own independent life. Natalia was lucky to grow up next to such a person as Igor Diakonov who was married to the sister of her adoptive mother.

Igor Diakonov was a great research scientist of ancient and modern history and also oriental languages (languages of the Middle East). He was a person whose knowledge and perceptions of the world were unlimited and wide. His spiritual and moral principles often made many people feel ashamed of themselves.

This person whom Natalia loved like a father gave her the main ideas about good and evil. He also helped her, as well as her mother did, to find the right orientations both in life and in the world of art. For this reason Natalia shows their photographs on her site.

Natalia started learning art at the age of 12 having had many different teachers during her young years. The very first teacher happened to be Helena Speranskaya and Sergei Titov, two young students of St. Petersborg Academy of Arts at the time. To them she owes a great deal as well. Later on Natalia went to a secondary Art school at St. Petersborg Academy of Arts where socialistic realism was the main “politically correct” idea among the teachers, but fortunately it started dying away at that time in Russia. The artist got her diploma not without trouble.

In 1983 Natalia finally finished her final education in art and graduated from Mukhina Applied College with diploma of industrial art designer. This is how the artist’s introduction to the world of art was completed. However, Natalia’s passion for all these years was painting.

In 1983 the artist married Dmitri Diakonov, a nuclear physicist and middle son of Igor Diakonov. In 1984 she gave birth to a boy whom they called Andrei. It was not easy to find time for painting through the first years of Andrei’s childhood. A real creativity started developing after Natalia became more free and got a chance to dedicate all her time to painting. Throughout her first 9 years in Copenhagen (to where the family moved in 1997), where her husband got a position at Nordita (Nordic institute for Theoretical Physics), she was constantly developing different styles and techniques which helped her to have really many personal exhibitions at differnt galleries and art societies in Copenhagen.

In February 2005 Natalia divorced her first husband who decided to return to St. Petersburg. The same year she met a Dane, the lawyer Peter Kjærgaard-Petersen who became her real friend and a year later her beloved husband.
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