About me

I was born in Leningrad (St. Petersburg) into a family of university teachers. My father, Michail Werzhbinskiy (1909-1962), was a mathematician and a talented amateur painter who excelled in caricatures. My inclination towards portraits probably was inspired by him. My mother, Eleonora Gomberg (1912-2002), was an art historian, I owe to her my knowledge about the history of art, but she herself never drew or painted. I graduated from a school specializing in art and later from the Muchina University of Applied Arts. Very important for me was the fact that from age 12 to 18 I received private training by the painter Eugenija Bogdanowa, a former student of the well known Russian impressionist Rylow. Another acquaintance crucial for me as a future painter was the one with Warwara Bubnova, an outstanding master of watercolours who had spent many years in Japan and returned to Russia for her last years of life. Since her return she lived in Suschumi at the Black Sea where I visited her several times.

Before my emigration I worked as a designer and taught artistic skills to children at the “Palace of Pioneers”, and I married the painter and designer Boris Rabinowich (1938-1988). In December 1977 our whole family moved to Austria. Since then I have been living and working in Vienna. For 16 years I worked as designer for the Viennese enamel manufacture M. Frey. I now teach painting to grown-ups and children, and since 1994 I work mainly as a free painter.

My favorite technique is watercolour, but I also use oil, gouache, tempera and pastels, it is only acryl which I do not accept. I prefer portraits, self portraits and compositions with imagined persons, I paint still lives and in 2000 and 2001 I took an excursion into landscape painting. As a painter I am not interested in doing abstracts but as a viewer I definitely appreciate this style. I prefer to follow my own path without fear of appearing not modern enough.