The Coningsby Gallery

Debut Art

Outstanding contemporary illustration
and graphic and fine art.

The Solstice Begins! / Olga Goldina Hirsch

Olga Goldina Hirsch

The Solstice Begins!

16 - 22 September 2024

Monday – Friday, 11am-6pm.

Saturday 11am – 4pm.

Curator of the exhibition: Irene Kukota

“A solstice occurs twice a year. The solstices are traditionally considered to signify the start of summer and winter. One brings in warmth, the other one ushers in cold. Each solstice marks a shift in rhythms and moods, in which we live and create. Twice a year during the solstice we are given a chance to survey our past and sketch out our future.” Olga Goldina Hirsch

The Coningsby Gallery and Katrine Levin Galleries are delighted to announce a new solo exhibition by Olga Goldina Hirsch. “The Solstice Begins” (16 - 22 September 2024) will feature twenty-one paintings made over the last six years. These works punctuate a development in this artist’s practice which investigates conceptual abstraction and the possibility of representing episodes of long-lost memories on the two-dimensional plane trough creating spatial depths and layers of transparent tones. Her paintings throb with pulsations of cosmic forces and personal history. The artist makes her paintings in mixed media, using layers of paint, screen printing and other kinds of printing. The subjects of her work are views of internal spaces, remembered, recovered, and reclaimed.

Olga’s works are extensive philosophical commentaries on the loss of historical memory that occurs in the time of political upheavals, wars, and other catastrophes. She also addresses the subsequent crisis of identity, and the possibility of healing. Her works are multi-layered, both technically and conceptually. They are like palimpsests, revealing layered messages to the viewer. The black background (or, rather black priming) in her paintings has strong symbolic connotations. Olga proceeds from opening her own “black square”, i.e. from reclaiming the fragments of the long-forgotten memories out of the “black holes” and abysses of oblivion. The artist attempts to find her own foothold in the void represented by the areas of white colour. However, this void is not entirely blank, but replete with information. Her paintings are an attempt to identify memories, retrieve them, and move on.

In her White Room and Mnemosyne series, space is shaped and defined by lines and structures that recall architectural elements, while in others the artist uses paint to veil internal spaces that can be glimpsed beneath.

These works all require long and intense staring into their depths. The role of light is crucial while looking at them. The rays of light, in the same way as the focused mental effort at recollecting, travel the expanse of the canvas and make dark or blind spaces in the painted compositions suddenly throb with life and movement. These seemingly dark and obscure surfaces then turn out to be populated with figures, silhouettes, vague contours, and outlines. The texture of the paints can also drastically transform under the changing light, acquiring depth and transparency. In this way, the effect of these paintings is somewhat cinematic. The eye never gets tired of travelling through them.

This exhibition sets one on a journey through the eternal cycles of the Solstice, from life to death and from death to rebirth, through the installation space and soundscape of White Room filled with childhood memories and then to Mnemosyne (the source of Memory, and the spring of creativity). Let us not forget, that in the Greek mythology, Mnemosyne, the Goddess of Memory is the Mother to all nine Muses, who accompany the Sun God Apollo, which brings us back to the eternal solstice cycles. Olga Goldina Hirsch lives and works in London. She received her MA in Fine Art from the City and Guilds of London Art School (Birmingham University) in 2018. In 2022, she became runner-up for the TEBBS International Art Award. The same year, her work Where Is My Home? was shortlisted for Hastings Open. She is also a member of the Taylor Foundation, Paris. Olga’s paintings are regularly showcased as part of the London Art on the Underground programme. Her artworks regularly appear in Times Square, NY, and featured there over ten times in 2023, the latest being on New Year’s Eve and in June 2024. Posters of Olga’s works featured at Regent’s Park station during the Frieze Art Fair in 2022 and were twice displayed on large screens at Pimlico station, London, in December 2023. Olga’s works can be found in the Copelouzos Family Art Museum, Athens, in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Vladivostok, and in private collections across the UK, France, Italy, Canada and the USA.

The exhibition is sponsored by James Hambro & Partners, a leading specialist in integrated wealth management and investment management services. www.jameshambro.com

Press Contact: Irene Kukota irene@artsandgraces.art + 44 7493394887

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Our standard opening hours are below but some exhibitions may have different opening hours. If they do, those opening hours will be detailed opposite.

9am - 6pm Monday - Friday

Weekends by appointment only UNLESS detailed otherwise opposite.

Specific weekend opening hours will be detailed opposite.

Closed Sundays and Public Holidays, unless stated otherwise opposite.

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