"Still Free" (2017)
For me, the female image has become a metaphor for Ukraine, as they portray a courageous, free and determined spirit.— Ola RondiakNEW YORK, NEW YORK (NY), USA, May 2, 2018 / EINPresswire.com / -- "Identity, Interrupted," is an exhibition of mixed media works by Ukrainian-American artist Ola Rondiak in which she uses traditional cut-and-paste collage and painting techniques to touch on influences ranging from personal history, womanhood, ethnic and national identity, politics, to street art.
The exhibition will open on Friday, May 4, 2018 with a reception for the artist at Te Ukrainian Institute of America from 6:00 to 8:00 PM, and will remain on view through Sunday, June 10. Curated by Walter Hoydysh, PhD, director of Art at the Institute, this marks Ms. Rondiak's first showing with The Ukrainian Institute of America.
"In my series Identity, Interrupted, I share how my Ukrainian identity, growing up in America, as the daughter of immigrants, was challenged when I began day to day life in a newly independent, 1990's Ukraine," said Ms Rondiak. "I've been creating contemporary female portraits since 2013. For me, the female image is a metaphor for Ukraine, as they portray a courageous, free and determined spirit. My art is an expression of something much greater than me."
Ms. Rondiak's work is situated between collage, painting and assemblage. She reinterprets the relationship between image and text by combining printed newspaper clippings and sewing patterns with painted female likenesses — scrutinizing historical, personal and social ideals, norms and roles, questioning models of representation and perception. Within this, her actual creative process varies considerably, sometimes producing several works simultaneously. By displaying a group of artworks of typological likenesses, she offers a comparative truth, a certain kind of access to her intimate subject matter.
Two central and repetitive motifs bear witness to Ms. Rondiak's narratives: the 'motanka,' the faceless handmade rag doll/talisman signifying the woman-goddess, and the 'vinok,' the traditional Ukrainian flower crown representing the purity of womanhood. Combined with iconographic depictions of her anonymous female protagonist against dense backdrops of disturbance, the emerged outcomes metamorphose into a metaphor for Ukraine herself, and an ever optimistic attitude toward the singular constancy and dignity of not only of the Ukrainian woman, but of women everywhere.
Ola Rondiak: Identity, Interrupted '… Rondiak captures her own vision to broaden our grasp of human experience and resiliency to finding the freedom to live in a society that remembers its past,' writes Kathrine Page, Gretchen Hupfel Curator of Contemporary Art at The Delaware Contemporary. 'In this respect, by commemorating the past, Rondiak's creativity cuts the cloth of a new absolute beauty with a redemptive quality that clearly understands the important healing role of art and the psyche for future generations.'
Selected past solo exhibitions of Ola Rondiak's works include installations at RA Gallery (Kyiv, Ukraine), America House (Kyiv), Mystetskyi Arsenal (Kyiv), The Delaware Contemporary (Wilmington, DE), and Zorya Fine Arts (Greenwich, CT), among others. Raised within the Ukrainian-American community in northeast Ohio, Ms. Rondiak moved to Kyiv, Ukraine in 1995, where she currently lives and works.
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