Oleg Vladimirovich Vassilev is one of the leaders of the unofficial art of the 1960’s-70’s. Working with Erik Bulatov from the start of the 1960’s, Oleg Vassilev worked on the illustration of children’s books for the ‘Detgiz’ and ‘Malish’ publishing houses. Their creative partnership lasted successfully for 33 years. The time not spent working on the designs for the publications, around six months a year, was devoted to their own independent creativity. At this time, the artist began to research the possibilities of painting as a specific language. Moving away Favorsky’s system, he studied the problem of the ‘world of the picture’, its surfaces and boundaries, its internal energy currents, the transformation of objects and space within the limits of the canvas. It was then that the main themes, which have continued in his work after he had left Russia right up to the present day, came into being: memories of home, streets, forests, fields, friends and family. In 1965 Vassilev completed his first work ‘Anzer’ which is considered the start of his creativity. His works often refer to literary quotations and allusions, from classic up to contemporary literature, from Chekhov, Faulkner, Homer up to Vsevolod Nekrasov and others. The literary references are the key to the picture’s space. Many of his works exist as a continuum / series, each connected to all the others. In 1990 the artist left for America where he continues to live to this day. The photo-realist poetics of Oleg Vassilev is undoubtedly one of the most remarkable phenomena in modern Russian painting.