May 26, 2010

The crossroads of two extremes: Designer and artist Liana Yaroslavsky

liana I recently discovered an intriguing designer and artist named Liana Yaroslavsky in the April 2010 issue of Vogue Living Australia. Liana’s life story is as compelling, fascinating, and extreme as the amazing tables—literally pieces of art—that she creates.

Liana was born in Leningrad and lived a young life filled with art, music, and end evenings at the Kirov Ballet. Her grandfather played the piano, her grandmother painted waterclours, and her father was an art book editor.

When Liana turned 9, she and her mother emigrated to Israel, leaving her father and grandmother behind in Russia. Ten years later, Liana did military service, going for 4:00AM runs and learning how to use weapons. And at the same time, she was taking dance and art classes and becoming a model. By the age of 20, she had been married and divorced.

crystals She left Israel to go to New York with a film director. She learned sculpting, painting, and graphic design at Parsons School of Design and joined the largest graphic arts studio in New York City after graduating. Then she promptly quit to marry a Frenchman and move to Paris. She became the artistic director at a graphic design agency there, and eventually created her own studio.

And then as she wondered if someone would discover her, she discovered herself.

Liana had a Murano chandelier she had fallen in love with, but she didn’t know what to do with it. One day, she decided to change her coffee table. She took the chandelier, turned it upside down, spread out the branches like flowers on a bed of 19th century watercolours, and put it all into a plexiglass cube. It was Liana’s first creation, and the start of the realization of her dream to create art.

Like Liana’s life, her art is the crossroads of two extremes. Paradoxical and sophisticated… Versailles and Rock & Roll… history and post-modernity… purist and baroque… minimalism and exuberance… ordered and haphazard… parquet with crystal… masculine and feminine…

These are a few of Liana’s tables, starting with her first creation…

esquisse titleesquisse render

esquisse 2 esquisse table


le bal title

Inspired by the Tsar’s royal ball in Anna Karenina, Le Bal includes piano keys, wings made from real feathers, 19th century piano compositions, and two crystal chandeliers.

le bal rendering  le bal 

dome title

The juxtaposition of sparkly crystal and raw parquet is a perfect example of “the crossroads of two extremes”.

dome rendering dome lit

O2 title

This table is my favourite — one hundred balls of Murano blown glass floating above a Versailles parquet floor… O2O2 render


O23   O2b

I highly encourage you to visit Liana’s web site to read all about her fascinating life and to explore all of her creations, including interiors…


…and her studio.


Do Liana’s life and experiences inspire you to follow your dreams?? Leave a comment and let me know what you’re dreaming of creating.

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qerat said...

This is an amazing artist
just amazing

Marcus Design said...

Wow, I really love Liana's work, I've never seen anything like it. The thought of doing such interesting installations sort of intimidates me but inspires me at the same time!! She is so good, I will definetely be checking out her website for more. Thanks for sharing her work with us!

Lee said...

Her sketches are as fascinating as her glass pieces. i always admire a designer who can communicate her ideas and energy through her sketches.

Vanessa@decor happy said...

Those tables are so unique and her story fascinating. I have my 1st giveaway, so please stop by!

Lisa said...

Wow great post Kelly! I love these tables, and I'm with you the 02 one is spectacular. I can imagine myself staring at it for hours.

Michelle said...

Well that's really cool. I would never want to put anything on that table!! Don't you just love international publications? I just bought a few in NY, and I am still going through them.


Unknown said...

I can honestly say, that is the most original thing I've seen in ages!

Connie @ SogniESorrisi said...

Gorgeous stuff! Love Le Bal and Le Dome.

Unknown said...

Really fascinating table designs, Kelly. Thanks for sharing! I love her drawings, as well. Will have to ckeck out her website - what an interesting, talented lady.

Unknown said...

i love reading the back-story on this artist. what a lively, interesting life she has led. Has someone purchased the movie rights, yet? ;-)

Staci Edwards said...

the O2 light is my favorite! Lovely!

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