Featured Artist: Serhiy Kolyada


When did you really get into art?

- I began at my childhood when I attended classes at the art studio. I was 14 years old at that time. But I think realy I get into art in 1993. I was 21 then. .

How did you come to the realization that you should try your luck at art on a more serious level?

-I studied at the University on the Linguistic faculty but I spent a lot of time drawing. I had an idea that I should become a famous artist. When I finished attending the University in a little city in Ukraine I decided to go to the capital- Kyiv and tried to do something with my art. I wanted to make my exhibition or to publish my pieces at some art magazine. .

How would you describe your style?

-I think I can call it postmodern. I use the quotations from the old classical art giving to them another meaning and mix all this with contemporary pop symbols. Sometimes I use social or political commentaries. This makes my art underground and Ukrainian galleries refuse my work. The technique is quite original, ball-point pen on paper.

How did you find your style?

-When I studdied at the University I read some postmodern philosophy books and some postmodern literature. That gave me some inspiration. And some years earlier during Perestroika they began to publish some information about the avante-garde (I am not sure of spelling) artists who were considered forbidden during communism. It was interesting for me to read about this. You cannot use watercolours, for example, during classes of literature or languages to practice with. So I made some little pieces with the ball-point pen on my papers.

Who or what influences you?

-I am influenced by the art of Dali, Andy Warhol, as well as Taras Shevchenko (a famous Ukrainian artist and poet of the 19 Century). I use quite often his heroine Katerina in my drawings. You can see her- a pregnant girl in the national costume. I also like Germain Expressionists: George Grosz, OttoљDix, Egon Schille, etc. I mean I like their social stream. When I was young I was also influenced by rock music, which was forbidden before 1987. I listened to to BBC or The Voice of America music programs to enjoy and have some free information. So I think "the sense of freedom is in my blood now".

How do you approach creating a new piece?

-It is different all the time. Usually, I have some central idea and then add details in the piece. Sometimes I see them in my dreams when I sleep.

What would be the ultimate goal for you and your art?

-I would like more people have the possibility to see my art. I think that it could make them open their mind. It's especially about the Ukrainians. They still sleep even after the Orange Revolution.

What kind of message, if any, do you try to convey through your art?

-I want to show the people that they must have their own point of view and that they must try not to be a part of the system and a part of the consumerism society.

Any additional comments / shout outs?

-My art is still underground in my country (Ukraine), but I beleive it will eventually be free and my compatriots will finally understand me and my art. I think it could help people to feel they are free, and hopefully help us to create a real democracy in Ukraine.

More of this artists work can be seen at the following website:


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© Сергій Коляда Serhiy Kolyada