“I’ve been assembling my hometown from small shops, people, air, playbills. I still remember, feel and love it; I feel it like we sense the smell of mother, the smell of affection, words and smiles; I love it because I grew up there, was happy, sad and dreamy — passionately, incredibly dreamy...”
(Isaac Babel “Childhood. At Grandmother’s”)
Isaac Babel managed to subtly feel and describe the unique spirit of Odessa and its inhabitants, who’s got mixture of blood of different nations flowing in their veins. Amazing types, remarkable characters, they absorbed the energy of the sun, the smell of the sea and rich taste of dishes.
I also had to express my sense of hometown, through a graphic series of works for interiors of an Odessa restaurant. It was then that I came up with an idea of creating collages from drawings of Odessa’s distinctive characters and photos of unique places of the city. It has recreated, in my opinion, an atmosphere which used to reign within Odessa before: the mood of a courtyard, street bustle, life at seaside, — all the images that I had a good fortune to observe in my childhood and my adolescence.