Artist Statement: Through the message “Why Wait? Love Now.”, my art represents the transition from vulnerability to strength - a quality that all brave souls possess. As we emotionally evolve, we expose ourselves to diverse levels of emotional transcendence and open up to engagements with others, - which is a courageous and an extremely vital thing to do. This allows us to take risks that lead us to meaningful experiences of love, joy and happiness through others and ourselves. Having gone through emotionally abusive relationships, I was able to preserve my formula of happiness, and my art is a visual expression of that formula. “Why Wait? Love Now.” is a movement I created to support people on their journey towards joy that’s immune to all externalities, in a whole-hearted way. I invite you to rid yourself of fear and let yourself love. I promise that openly loving yourself and others is the only way to invite joy into your soul. Although you might fall and get hurt in the process, you will learn how to get up, how to keep going and that happiness comes, not from the actions of others, but from within. Artist Biography: How can you look into the eyes of an artist and feel their emotions in their absence? Tsvetana Dondero aka Urban Russian Doll makes it possible. Her emotional imagery chorded with vivid colors will whisk your soul away with one glance. Dondero is a New York City based urban visual artist located in Washington Heights. Dondero was born in Moscow and spent her childhood singing in the Russian Orthodox Church. Growing up with a single mother who was often ill but still had to look after two daughters, Tsvetana was often left to her own devises with watercolors and a brush trying to draw icons - like portraits she saw in church. Her work therefore has the aesthetic quality of religious divinity - something which is consistent through her work, even when her subject of expression is of a sexual or sensual nature. After going through emotional turbulence in her personal life, her understanding of suffering and trauma is often manifested in her art. Her paintings are about healing invisible pain and soothing hurtful scars through accepting love, strength of soul and building self-resilience. Thus “Why Wait? Love Now.” was born. “Why Wait? Love Now.” is a movement created by Dondero that helps people get through challenges and situations by having the courage to love. Tsvetana Dondero finds inspiration in the work of Brené Brown, a research professor at the University of Houston, who has spent past two decades studying courage, vulnerability, shame and empathy. Dondero connected to Brown’s research, who shows that you must walk through the feeling of vulnerability to reach courage. Tsvetana also connects to works of legendary artists such as Claude Monet, Salvador Dali, Ivan Aivazovsky and contemporary artists such as Ruthy Valdez, Lecrue Eyebrows, Lindsay Rapp, Menace and Resa, Natasha May Platt, Uncutt and many others. Dondero sees collaborations and unity as the way of progress for art in a global sense. Tsvetana Dondero is a self-taught artist. She uses acrylics and oils for the base in her paintings and often adds mica powder, fabric, spray paint, mink and other media to emphasize the colors and the emotional message. Tsvetana has also launched a street art campaign titled “Why Wait? Love Now.” which includes sculptures and stickers with her message and self-designed campaign logo that pictures a hugging couple. Tsvetana Dondero is an artist who is constantly basking in her emotions. She invites you to accompany her in the pleasure of feeling, loving and being alive.