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Oksana Berda the artist stands in her light filled studio surrounded by paintings

photo by Vai Yu Law


Oksana Berda is a contemporary abstract artist working and living in Toronto, CA. She holds a Master of Arts from the University of New Brunswick in Creative Writing, which informs the narrative quality of her work. Her paintings explore interactions between natural elements like stone, sand, water and wood. Gathering details from each landscape, she reassembles them as ghostly washes, braids of graphing pencil, and soft pastel lines which contain the forms that might otherwise stretch out and over the edge of the paper. Berda treats colour as character; in her work forms interact and converse: they are introduced, they marry and separate. The landscapes are actively constructed and deconstructed within the process and by the viewer. The mediums move with precision, yet are free and spontaneous; painting on the threshold of abstraction, Berda’s compositions embody the spirit of jazz music. Oksana Berda crosses paths with those also pursuing something intangible: the softness of her colour palette recalls that of Agnes Martin; her precise use of geometry, Frank Stella; from David Burdeny she inherits a sense of curiosity towards the natural world and shares Andy Goldsworthy’s affection for its textures. Berda is an avid hiker and gets her inspiration from trips to various parks surrounding Toronto and spending time on Lake Ontario.