ISAAK GRAZUTIS



Biography

Born in 1930 in Kaunas, Lithuania, Isaak Grazutis has a storied past worth noting as an antecedent to his paintings.

In 1941, at the age of eleven, Isaak was forced to flee his native village in advance of Nazi occupation. After his parents were taken away by the invading forces, he was brought to live in an orphanage in Ural, and later, Moscow where he spent his formative years. During this time, he enrolled in art school at Moscow City Art College. In 1950, at the age of 20, Isaak returned to Lithuania for advanced study in the fine arts at Lithuania State Art Institute in Vilnius. After graduating with a Master of Arts Degree in Fine Art (1956), he was given the official assignment of traveling to Tadzhikistan. There, he painted in tribal villages surrounded by the vast mountain vistas. This experience of 'plein air' painting in such a unique environment would help Isaak to develop the signature impressionist style that typifies his landscape painting today.

In 1957, he returned to Moscow and later to Lithuania where he worked as a graphic artist. Within a year after his return he was exhibiting his art in Moscow and also in Vilnius. By 1970, he had been granted membership in the prestigious Union of Soviet Artists.

The subsequent unraveling of the Soviet system opened the door for emigration, and in 1979 Isaak made his way to the United States. Settling in the Chicago area, he landed a position as a graphic designer for the international publisher, Encyclopaedia Britannica Educational Corporation. In 1985, he left Britannica to pursue his interests in book design and oil painting.

Isaak Grazutis' artwork is in private collections in Lithuania, Russia, Israel, Canada, and the United States. He is currently active as a fine artist, painting primarily in the medium of oil.