A text by Lena Zaidel for Natasha Kuznetzova´s exibition: Different Reality, 2010
The Jerusalem Artist´s House

Natasha Kuznetzova, Drwahrfts (detail) 2010,  acrylic on canvas, 210X200 cm

Different Reality

Natasha Kuznetsova’s complex, personal and associative world is accompanied by a combined tragic-comic perspective, while evoking art history.

The ideas her work are based on are reduced to the point they appear flat and placard-like, her subjects resembling comic book superheroes. Kuznetsova’s carefree approach to the subject matter and lack of pathos characterize the series “Dwarfs”. This series depicts caricature-like subjects, such as pianist Michel Petrucciani, a wild-like female motorcyclist and a dwarf girl accompanied by her dog. Most of Kuznetsova’s characters seem to have been pressed by a steamroller. Kuznetsova’s work evokes Picasso’s famous and humorous dwarfs and dialogues with Velázquez’ portraits, which have been described as individualistic, humane and tragic. Kuznetsova seeks to transform her subjects into an allegory of the human condition, suggesting we are all dwarfs in a pressure chamber. Her dwarfs are portrayed in a manner suggesting they are neither grotesque nor tragic and marginal, but rather as having made peace with themselves and found their role in society.

Kuznetsova’s tendency to stress the clash between the profound philosophical content and her light and uninhibited style is evident in “The Cats Abandon the City”, from the series “Once Upon a Time”. Warning bells toll, and the cats are compared to rats fleeing a sinking ship - a signal, a sign of impending disaster or environmental holocaust. Kuznetsova’s work incorporates grey and black acrylic colors, with a touch of gold and silver. The metallic colors intensify the quizzical and mysterious sensation conveyed by her work. The presence of silver and gold suggest the gold icons from the early Renaissance period, and the subject matter resembles apocalyptic scenes typical of this period. This connection renders Kuznetsova’s intuitive forewarning into a universal warning call. The result is tragic-comic, and both humor and hope merge in the artist’s portrayal of the apocalypse. 

Lena Zaidel, 2010
Translation from Hebrew: Yehoshua Yair 


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