Fine Tuning: Nostalgia in Slow Motion

7:00 AM

 Rafal Olbiński, Nostalgia in Slow Motion, 1945
Fine Tuning
By NATALIE BEYER

Similar to René Magritte, Rafal Olbiński paints in the style of Surrealism - producing incongruous imagery or effects in art through unnatural or irrational juxtapositions and combinations. When asked to describe his artwork, he describes is as "poetic surrealism" and says his influences are "everybody." He takes everyday objects and turns them into different worlds, allowing the viewer to only imagine what goes through Olbiński's head when he paints.

Rafal Olbiński was born in Poland in 1943 and he migrated the United States in 1981 after finishing schooling at the architectural school at Warshaw University of Technology in Poland. For his works, he has won over 150 awards including Gold and Silver Medals from the Art Directors Club of New York, Gold and Silver Medals from the Society of Illustrators in New York and Los Angeles, and the Big Crit 2000 award by Critique Magazine in San Fransisco. Even the President of the Republic of Poland awarded Oldiński the highest award in the field pf arts, the gold medal, "Gloria Artis."

In his painting of Nostalgia in Slow Motion, he features a woman's soft face in the strings of a golden harp. (Definition of a Harp: a plucked stringed instrument consisting of a resonator, an arched or angled neck that may be supported by a post, and string of graded length that are perpendicular to the soundboard). If a person were to play the harp, they would play off of the treble clef, a clef placing the note "G" above the middle note "C" on the second-lowest line of the staff. A purple orchid accents the yellow in the harp that contrasts the white clouds and light blue sky in the background. This woman however, is just a random woman that Olbiński decided to paint, and just like most of his other paintings, his subjects are people he finds off the street. I like to think that he called this painting Nostalgia in Slow Motion because the woman in the harp used to play, and is remembering her past, letting her hair flow in the wind.

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