Thursday, November 3, 2016

Vague Accent: Olga Chernysheva

When I stepped into Olga’s depiction of New York City, currently on display at the Drawing Center, I was overwhelmed by the conflict between the real New York City that I see and Chernysheva's vision.

Her sketches, which vary in sizes, were hanging on a pinkish blue wall. The tone of her sketches and the color of the gallery wall were harmonious.  

On one of Chernysheva's drawings - of a MTA employee standing in front of a fast moving train she notes, “In NY everything moves north, south, west or east. Despite this strict order, NY trains often changes routes unpredictably.” By smearing the charcoal in one direction, Chernysheva depicts the blurry motion of the moving train. For the still figure next to the train, she pressed the charcoal hard, creating a contrast between the stillness and the motion. She captures the fast pace of New York. But one is also left with an enduring image of the beauty of the city. Moreover, The angles she choose are uncommon; for example, the close up of the hand dryer, which we see it everyday without paying attention. But viewed through her eyes and charcoal images, they are transformed into something more significant and elegant.

New York City is a chaotic and mysterious city. However, after the Chernysheva’s tour, I started to ask myself: How much beauty have we missed when we are taking a bus or even washing our hands and how much is still left for us to discover?

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