Born to Russian immigrants in 1989 in Maine, USA, Chisha Paszczyk became interested in art early in life. Due to a lack of toys and other childhood diversions, she instead amused herself with paper and pencil. Throughout her school years, she continued to focus on art and, in 2006, was accepted into the Maine College of Art, a year before her peers completed their high school education.
Here, she studied painting and jewellery design for two years; however, soon after entering the prestigious institution, she was becoming increasingly aware that the contemporary art scene did not value the development of traditional skills. Accordingly, she decided to go travelling in Europe, aiming to complete her education at the Irish Academy of Figurative Art. However, due to life intervening in the form of a child, this development was not destined to be realised. Instead, her travels led to Scotland, where she opened a jewellery workshop, then to Poland, where she acquired her third language, and again back to Scotland, where under the auspices of her business, Yagga Designs, she produced original jewellery designs and organised workshops including Bronze Age Kiln Building with Rod Hughes, an artifact restoration expert working at the British Museum.
In 2016 Chisha moved to Russia to work as a language teacher. Being incapable of leading an ordinary life, Chisha threw herself into the study of ballet under the expert tutelage of Sergey Krashenko, a recently retired lead dancer in the Ekaterinburg Theatre of Opera and Ballet. At the same time, she was working on several collaborative art projects with singer and poetic translator Thomas Beavitt. As well as dancing for the Rhyming Thomas & the Faery Queen project in Scotland and Moscow, Chisha produced imagery for a video accompanying Beavitt’s original song When the Lion lies down with the Lamb, as well as Winter Journeyman, his contemporary English version of Schubert’s famous Winterreise song cycle.
It was through the exhibition of her works for the Winter Journeyman project that Chisha came into contact with the Ekaterinburg art scene and was subsequently taken under the wing of Alexander Remisov and Stanislav Atuchin, both prominent artists working in Russia’s fourth largest city. Thus, in tandem with her interest in classical ballet, Chisha is currently studying the traditional principles of painting and drawing that were lacking in her formal art education, supporting herself by language teaching and producing original artwork within the framework of collaborative projects.