Andrew Osta is an internationally collected Ukrainian-Canadian artist, songwriter, and author. Andrew has lived and worked in Canada, Mexico, Peru, and South Korea. His work can also be seen in Ancaster, ON, Canada (near Toronto), and in various galleries in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Visits are by appointment only.
Originally from Kiev, Ukraine, Andrew Osta immigrated to Canada in 1994 and has exhibited on 4 different continents since. He began to show professionally in the Toronto area in 2005. In 2006, he had his first exhibition in Mexico. In 2007, he exhibited in Asia for the first time. In 2009, he first exhibited in South America.
Andrew Osta‘s intuitive and innovative approach to art caught the attention of Keith Widgor, founder of SurrealismNow.com, who invited Andrew to participate in numerous surrealist exhibitions between 2006 and 2011.
In 2008-2009, Andrew helped form the “Healing and Counselling Through Art” program with refugees at SISO Hamilton. During this time, he also taught art workshops in Hamilton’s McMaster University and taught art classes with the Immigrant Culture and Art Association of Hamilton.
In 2009, he presented his art at the 5th International Amazonian Shamanism Conference in Iquitos, Peru, sharing the exhibition with the late Pablo Amaringo.
Andrew’s many projects include the non-fiction book “Shamans and Healers: The Untold Ayahuasca Story from a Shaman’s Apprentice” (available on Amazon), “Walk in the Light: Holy Teachings for Modern Times” (available on Amazon) and a CD of original songs, titled Dimension Dream (available on Itunes). He also has a line of T-Shirt designs and a large collection of stretched canvas or framed prints on Fine Art America.
==Artist Statement 2013 ==
In my work, I seek to explore the mystery of creativity. The creative process fascinates me, and I have been exploring it in many different ways for as long as I can remember. Part of the reason why I make art is to see creativity at work, to explore it and study it like a scientist.
When I first began making pen and ink drawings in 2004, I did so without any idea of what I actually wanted to draw. Instead, I spontaneously transformed my thoughts and feelings into symbols, placed those symbols unto the page, and watched as they slowly fused and combined to form the big picture.
The overwhelming majority of my paintings were done without any concrete idea of how I wanted the finished product to look. I just figured that I would know it when I see it. I just painted until the thing was done. This way of working allowed me the greatest freedom to explore spontanious creativity.
My reasoning behind this practice was that the subconscious mind is known to be much more powerful than the conscious; therefore the better paintings could be created quicker and easier if the subconscious mind was allowed to be in control. Thus, I would focus my conscious mind on something else – meditating on life, for example, or simply listing to good music – while my subconscious mind would take charge of creating the composition. My conscious mind would then only come in once in a while to perform quality control. I stuck with this practice for the last 10 years, and for me, it is by far the most satisfying way to paint, because it is therapeutic, surprising, exciting, and very efficient.
Having never taken an art class since the compulsory ones in middle school, I don’t really follow the standard practices of academic painters. Even my 5×5 foot paintings are always done spontaneously, without planning or sketching. Once I make a sketch, I usually lose interest in painting the composition again, so the sketch becomes the painting.
For me, painting becomes just another mundane job if the mystery of it is taken out. Thus, while it is common practice for painters to re-interpret the same subject or idea a large number of times, this way of working does not appeal to me. Consider a music group that writes all of their songs using the same 4 chords and changing only a few notes here and there. Such a group is obviously uninspired, lacking in imagination, and lifeless. Then why should a painter follow that model?
If my subject matter and style sometimes seems to change rather radically, it is only because I am constantly exploring. This doesn’t mean that I don’t know what I like. A chef that cooks only variations of egg dishes is a joke, but for some reason, painters are often expected to do variations of the same thing over and over. Picasso certainly didn’t do that, which is precisely why his artistic genius is so obvious.