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«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv

«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv
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Lena Letina / Artwork: Olena Burdeina (FA_Photo) via Photoshop

 

Olena Vorobiova (artistic pseudonym Lena Letina) was born in Kyiv, graduated from the National Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture and the Drahomanov National Pedagogical University. She is a collage artist. Founder and head of the creative studio «Lena Letina studio».

Currently, she is working on a series of collages «The World Inside Out» to draw public attention to situations that, in the author’s opinion, go beyond conscious perception. Her works have been presented at many international exhibitions, festivals, contests, and charity projects. They are also kept in private collections around the world.

«I like to travel, read, listen, think… But most of all, I like to observe human reactions in different life circumstances. I analyze, notice, rethink — and share my experience in my collages».

Lena Letina’s collages provoke reflection. They make you look for meanings, perceiving symbols, composition, color, dynamics.

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаWhat is the first creative moment in your life that you remember?

I loved drawing with colored chalk on the road. You would draw something beautiful, be happy, and then it would rain and wash it all away. And then you can draw whatever you want again! An allegory for our life.

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаWhat is your creative ambition?

To realize my feelings in art in a way that resonates with every heart of the viewer…

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаWhat stands in the way of realizing your creative ambitions?

Rather, not ambitions, but plans — it’s the time I spend on everyday life and worries. In general, everyday life is the eternal enemy of creativity, and in the conditions of war, the development of new countries, new skills, new connections, and constant pain for your native country — it is a huge monster that steadfastly stands guard over the gates to the creative paradise.

 

«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv
Lena Letina. Reflection, 2021

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаHow do you start your day?

Usually with a glass of warm water with lemon, sometimes with a cupcake (smiles).

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаWhich artists do you admire the most?

Those who have successfully used non-standard moves and embedded large-scale ideas in familiar, even banal, themes. I have a lot of respect for artists who don’t try to create a realistic image, but use the image as a symbol, whose works are meant to be thought about, who provoke you to «unravel» the idea. This is great art, a game with the viewer that brings great joy to all the «players».

 

«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv
Lena Letina. Generator of ideas, 2021

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаIs there someone in your life who constantly inspires you?

It is LIFE itself, the stories of people with whom I communicate openly. For example, a friend shared that he had a very difficult time going through his child’s transition, and told me what problems he and his wife were solving. And I seemed to «live» all his emotions and anxieties with him, so much so that I later made a collage called «Transition Age».

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаHow do you react when you encounter a superior mind or talent?

First of all, respect! Secondly, I always wonder what’s in a person’s head and how they came to this point. Just kidding. I don’t believe in talent. I believe in hard work and dedication. I always wonder what inspired a person to do what they did. What resources did they use to achieve success?

 

«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv
Lena Letina. Butterfly wing flap, 2022

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаHow do you react when you face obstacles to success or the threat of failure?

I react with joy! Like a challenge. It’s always interesting to see how you will cope with obstacles. When you pass them and look back at where you started, you feel a completely different taste of life.

 

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«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаHow do you define mastery?

The ability to attract the audience’s attention, to unite them with an idea. How do you make the viewer stop, get out of the «internal dialog» and think about the work? This is the mastery! For example, the works of Lucio Fontana, who cut a blank canvas with a knife and created infinity… Or the transformations of the human body in the sculptures of Urs Fischer… It’s very creative.

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаWhat is your biggest dream?

I set goals and objectives. Somehow the line between dream and reality has become thinner lately, and I am deeply convinced that almost all dreams can come true if you create a good plan and act in that direction. Of course, the biggest goal is Ukraine’s victory. We are doing everything possible for this.

 

«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv
Lena Letina. Transition age, 2022

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаOver the past decade, Ukraine has changed…

The consciousness of people. From «my house is on the edge» to the enormous responsibility of everyone. At least, I want to believe that. But there are also opposite examples. It is very upsetting.

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаI want to change things in my hometown…

I want to restore everything that the villains have done.

 

«The World of Art through the Lens of Collage», by Lena Letina, a collage artist from Kyiv
Lena Letina. Luck, faith, hope, love, 2022

 

«В Киеве хочу изменить отношение к архитектурным памятникам, усадьбам, мозаикам — очень больно за них», — художница Татьяна ЯгодкинаI lack in my hometown…

More art on the streets of Kyiv. In all its forms. Let every street, every park, every square, be known all over the world for its peculiar and unique installation, sculpture, mystery, color…

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаIf not your hometown, then what city in Ukraine?

Lviv is the soul! With its incredible people, stories, monuments, museums, churches, galleries, and, of course, cafes, restaurants, and cozy places.

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаA metaphor, a literary hero, an association for modern Ukraine…

It’s a complicated question. For me, at the moment, it’s the work of the French sculptor O. Zadkine, «The Destroyed City». It is a monument to the Dutch port of Rotterdam, destroyed during World War II. It is a metal structure resembling a ruined person. The deformed figure with raised arms is like a cry of despair, a plea for help, a manifestation of maximum mental stress…

It seems to be a disorderly pile of iron, but in fact it is an artistic image of enormous tragic power. This is exactly what every Ukrainian is going through right now. I am sure that our artists will immortalize the monument of our tragedy for future generations with the same expressiveness.

 

Осип Цадкин. Памятник «Разрушенный город». 1951–1953 годы
Ossip Zadkine. Monument «Destroyed City». 1951-1953 / wikipedia.org

 

«Мне не хватает сине-желтого флага над городской администрацией Луганска», — из творческого досье художника Евгения ГригорьеваIs it possible to forgive an enemy?

This is a very painful question that each of us will have to find an answer to. How can you forgive the murderer of your child? I don’t know. The only thing I know is that you cannot stay in the state of «victim». It is an unbearable burden. It takes strength, time, energy, health… And the only way to get out of it is to ask yourself, «What am I going to do next?», «What will I take away from this terrible experience to live on?» I don’t know if it’s about forgiveness, but it’s a lesson we all have to learn and do everything we can to prevent it from happening again.

 

«В Киеве хочу изменить отношение к архитектурным памятникам, усадьбам, мозаикам — очень больно за них», — художница Татьяна ЯгодкинаBest advice you’ve ever received in your life…

Give yourself time and space!

 

«У Києві хочу змінити ставлення до архітектурних пам'яток, садиб, мозаїк, бо дуже болить», — художниця Тетяна ЯгодкінаIs there a phrase that you use to guide you through life?

The idea of the work or the intention of the work is more valuable than the professional, artistic skill of the author.

 


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