Where there is no law, but every man does what is right in his own eyes, there is the least of real liberty
Henry M. Robert

“Between Heaven and Earth”

The Manufactura gallery hosts an exhibit of Anastasia Kraineva
21 September, 2015 - 17:23

Anastasia Kraineva, a graduate of the Uzhhorod College of Decorative and Applied Art and the Lviv Academy of Arts, has put on a solo exhibit that focuses on the existential perception of happiness at the present moment, i.e., the point where the past touches the future.

The serenity and beauty of Kraineva’s canvases are close in spirit to contemplative and peaceable people. The pictures painted either several years ago or very recently have the same integrated life-philosophy basis, but they, naturally, differ in some external, purely artistic, principles. The paintings displayed for public view this autumn are done in a much more abrupt manner than were the artist’s earlier works. Anastasia combines large spaces of the canvas into a whole by means of the same coloring, adds some abrupt and accentuated touches, applying the palette-knife technique, and then emphasizes some details. The richness of a refined gamut of colors, the drawing of spectators’ attention to the inner world’s harmony, a clear and open message to the world – this is how the artist’s creative style can be described in brief.

Exhibit organizers believe that Kraineva’s artworks create a sensation of absolutely serene weightlessness in spectators. “Color spots and strokes of the palette knife on the texture create the impression of an abstract canvas which seems to be projecting concrete objects, and this also creates the impression of magic… The pictures cause a sensation of sublimity, and you will feel that a meadow blossoms like a bright carpet and the sky is lit up with morning and evening glows,” they say.

The beautiful aloofness of Kraineva’s world is caused not only by her individual artistic vision, but also by the fact that the main hero of all her works is a high, wide, and immense sky. It is the place of the main action – a sacral touch of the human soul with Eternity. The sky becomes a screen which overtly flashes the innermost spiritual life – for it is so difficult and sometimes impossible to be aware of the life of your inner world in your daily routine, among impressions, meetings, turbulent events and discussions thereof.

We all know that in the world of art practically the whole intricate gamut of human sensations can be expressed allegorically – sometimes through a feminine figure, as in Anastasia’s pictures My Pierrot and Lady Winter, and sometimes by means of a landscape. The spectator will see a dynamic diptych, Between Heaven and Earth, where the smooth water surface mirrors a tense structure of the slowly-drifting clouds, and will compare it with an epically calm canvas which shows clouds that slowly travel in the sky proper and instill a contemplative mood in you (Heavenly Wanderers). Kraineva’s pictures call on the audience to give up all the earthly things for a short moment, for a peaceful unity of heaven and Earth will bring you harmony and appeasement.

The exhibit “Between Heaven and Earth” will bring true delight to those who like combinations of tender colors, are rather romantic by nature, and can get rid, at least for some time, of all vain things in the name of the sublime. This may be an excellent stimulus for you to spend a weekend in the countryside, relish silence, and see the abovementioned clouds that scud across a boundless indigo-colored sky. As the exposition organizers said rightly, Anastasia Kraineva’s painting illuminates, rather than reflects, all the joy of our existence, and one of the goals of her oeuvre is to fit our subconscious world into the structure of a drawing, and help audiences reveal their minds and inner world, perceive a wonder, and become aware of the beauty of being “here and now.”

Come to the Manufactura gallery – the exhibit will remain open to all art appraisers until October 25 every day, including weekends, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Photo courtesy of the Manufactura gallery

By Olena Shapiro is an art critic