Ukrainian artist Olga Kosheleva was born into a world of massive disruption: East and West collided while the ecological disasters of Chernobyl, Three Mile Island and the Exxon Valdez reminded us that modern advances can exact a terrible cost.
Her art addresses our fragile coexistence with the earth’s ecosystems, without ever losing a sense of humor. Olga’s themes are deep: “Plastic All Around” and “Consumerism” address our all-encompassing consumer culture — but also playful and positive: for example, the crocodiles and shrimp which inhabit “Survival,” are, on closer examination, composed of smaller human figures. We are all in this together.
Decades after Chernobyl, “Global Warming” shows melting ice caps on one lens, while human faces with thermometer-noses react on the opposite lens: funny yet serious. Olga says, “Everyone looking at my artwork should ask: ‘What can I do to have an impact, and improve the planet’s health?”
Recently broadening her choice of media to sculpture and other objects, she asks us to examine our world, quite literally, through different lenses. In her newest collections, “Connection” and “Virtual or Real?” by painting her creations onto large-scale (2-meter) sunglasses, she invites us to view our surroundings through the prism of art.
“We should look at the world through art,” she says. “It has the power to change our lives.”
Her playfulness extends to the “Art that Moves” series, a whimsical collection of “cosmic” vehicles. These pieces insert us into the art and allow it to transport us-merely by taking a bath, sitting on a throne, or riding a painted bicycle.
Olga’s collection, “Icebreakers,” was awarded the Leonardo da Vinci prize in Florence in January 2018. In 2017, Olga received an award from the Biennale del Belvedere di San Leucio, Italy.
She has participated in exhibitions across Europe and the Americas and her work is in many private collections in Europe and the United States.
— Group exhibition “Art Winter Contemporary”, M17 Contemporary Art Center, Kyiv
— Group exhibition “Art Autumn Contemporary”, M17 Contemporary Art Center, Kyiv
— Biennale del Belvedere di San Leucio, Italy
— Group exhibition “Art Summer Contemporary”, M17 Contemporary Art Center, Kyiv
— Solo exhibition “Art that moves”, Kyiv History Museum, Kyiv
— Group exhibition “What If Fest”, Lavra Gallery, Kyiv
— Group exhibition “Moving up”, Kyiv city administration, Kyiv
— Solo exhibition, gallery D12, Kyiv
— Solo exhibition “Ukrainian galaxy”, Palace of Congress, Bagnoles de l’Orne, France
— Art Monaco, Forum Grimaldi, Monaco
— Group exhibition “Ukraine and France: crossroad of cultures”, Ukrainian cultural center, Paris
— Autumn Salon 2012, Coubron, France
— Group exhibition “Summer’s memories”, museum of Ivan Kavaleridze, Kyiv
— Solo exhibition “Ukrainian Firework”, Gallery Mytets, Kyiv