Lesia Maruschak creates mobile memory spaces. Born in 1961 in Saskatchewan she spent her childhood on the Canadian prairies, land settled by her ancestors in 1874. In the mid-1970s she first picked up a camera, to which she did not return until 2016 when a diagnosis of leukaemia led her to change her life’s direction and commit to making art.
Maruschak’s work – a complex exploration of memory and sensual expression – informs and expands what it means to create. According to Monica Allende, “Maruschak’s work reflects on the visual memory of history, and the role of the artist in the decolonization of narratives which are critical issues in photography debate.”
Working across the still and moving image, sculpture and painting, Maruschak creates objects which encapsulate narratives emerging from fragments often multiplied thousands of times. Her commitment to making drives her to push what her camera captures until she arrives at an abstract sensual representation – almost otherworldly.
In just three years of practice Maruschak’s works have been collected by museums, exhibited in many solo and group photographic exhibitions in nine countries. She is also a maker of fine books. Her most recent publication MARIA received the International Arsenal Book Festival’s Grand Prix (2019, Kyiv). Her Limited-Edition Art Book, TRANSFIGURATION, has been acquired by numerous private and public collections including Duke University, Stanford University, Athenaeum, Columbia University, Thomas J. Dodd Research Center, and the Library of Congress. Maruschak collaborates with recognized international memory museums, lectures at international conferences such as FORMAT 19 University of Derby (2019). She makes special guest appearances at photo festivals including PhotoVenezia (2018) and Palm Springs Photo Festival (2017). In 2014, The Governor General of Canada presented Maruschak with the Caring Canadian and Silver Medal Award for her work.
Maruschak holds a MA in Ethnography and an MBA in International Management.
She spends her time between Alvena and Ottawa, Canada.