Slava Osinski- Ukrainian tape and street artist


Slava Osinski- Ukrainian artist? (biography and explication)


Vyacheslav “Slava” Osinski was born in Ukraine (USSR) in 1978. There he studied art and learned the techniques of drawing, linocut and printing.

In 1993 he began studying architecture.

In 1995, Slava and his family emigrated to Germany as quota refugees. As a result, he had to abandon his studies.

In Germany (Lübeck) he was taken to a camp together with the other returnees. There he faced aggressive rejection and was plunged into an atmosphere of hostility and social hatred.

1998. Due to his poor health, he developed problems with hearing loss that progressively worsened.

In 2003 Slava moved to Berlin.

From 2004 to 2007 he studied printing technology. (He did his training as a printing technician) During his apprenticeship, he worked in an offset printing company, then for two years in a design studio as a manufacturer of advertising materials.
He was constantly painting.
Due to his hearing loss, he had to give up his work in the production plant and in the team.

In 2009 he met the German minimalist Stefan Müller. Soon this acquaintance turned into a friendship. Slava began to grapple with the problems of contemporary art.

In 2010 he started his own creative path and registered as an independent artist.

He has been active as a street artist since 2011 and defines his credo as a self-taught adventurer who opens up new possibilities and visual techniques. Vyacheslav’s first stencil works on Berlin streets appeared under the pseudonym “Ostap” (Ostapchenko).

In 2013 Slava became a resident at the Urban Spree gallery and got his first studio. In the following two years, he was able to realize his ideas there. During this time, Ostap produced several series in urban areas:
Spree Can“, 2013-2018; “Spreewald Underground“, 2013-2018; “Art is…“, 2014, “FAQlove“, 2013-2015; “Indulgence” 2013-2014.

2015. In order to be able to participate in legal projects, the artist invented his own “brand”: The Selfmadecrew. Since then, he and his crew have taken part in exhibitions and commissioned projects.

A short explanation of the Slava Osinski artworks (Explication)

TAPE ART (Art made of adhesive tape)

2010 Inspired by the minimalist works of his friend Stefan Müller, an object emerges from two stretcher bars connected like chain stretcher frames.

Two frames chain- Homage to Stefan Müller's art

Untitled. 2010. Two frames chain

In 2011 he starts working with coloured duct tape according to the motto: “adhesive tape instead of paint.”

Wooden paint mixing palette of a tape artist, 2012

Untitled, 2012. 30×40, GAFFA tape, cutter knife, wooden color mixing palette

In 2012 he creates his first parametric adhesive tape constructs with light and shadow effects.

In 2013 Ostap discovers the use of the stencil principle to produce “stained glass window” art from packaging tape on glass or lightboxes.

 FAQlove (Diptych), 2013, Packing tape, hinged window lightbox, 55x70 and 50x70

FAQlove (Diptych), 2013, Packing tape, hinged window lightbox, 55×70 and 50×70 cm

He continues his spatial experiments with adhesive tape.

2015. When experimenting with adhesive tape and the working principle of a monochrome screen, he opens up new optical effects.


Ostap prefers the stencil technique because, as an ancestor of printing, it is one of the oldest methods of image transmission and reflects the international language of pop culture. In an urban environment, this fast and reusable method of image transmission resembles a magical, ritual action.

Cheburashka vs. rat series, 2013-2018, Stencil, Spray paint

Loving art (Series), 2013-2018, Stencil, Spray paint

Loving street art, Cheburashka vs. rat series, 2018, Stencil, Spray paint

Loving Street Art (Series), 2018, Stencil, Spray paint

Like many of his artist colleagues, he plays with the cult symbols and characters of pop cultures: East-West; Male-Female; Cucumber-Banana (Andy Warhol); Cheburashka — Mickey Mouse, Rat…

Ostap’s artistic strategy is to archive his stencil graffiti by creating unique prints on canvas.

Ostap takes up the themes of the modern media landscape through his rather simple but concise motifs: Politics, religion, love, globalization, sexual and urban culture, and employs them with cynical humor, directly and provocatively. The artist also makes sure that his works are somewhat ambiguous in meaning. Often Ostap’s figurative art evokes feelings in the viewer, both positive and amusing, stimulating, agreeing, and on the contrary, rejecting the artist’s personal, subjective views on life. Is he a cynic, romantic, or critic? Ostap leaves this decision to the viewer.

Jesus Visa Card- Stencil graffiti by Ostap at Berlin Kastanienallee, 2013

Indulgence, 2013, Stencil, Spray paint

5 Playing cards queen of hearts- Angela Merkel, Stencil street art by Ostap, 2017

Bundes Holdem, September 2017 (German chancellor election), Stencil, Spray paint

Ostap often combines different techniques and works with unconventional materials. He always tries to create something new, like for example his works with optical effects, which were created by using raster-nets or fluorescent and UV inks.

Through the use of dotted nets as stencils and his examination of the perception of the dot pattern with the eye, a series of optical illusions are created on the canvas.

Imagination, The Jesus Portrait, 2013, stencil, spray paint, canvas 140x70 cm

Imagination, 2013, stencil, spray paint, canvas 140×70 cm

Optical stencil spray art, 60x90 cm, 2018

Art is…, 2018, stencil, spray paint, 60×90 cm

In regards to art history, Ostap is interested in artists such as Van Gogh, Klimt, Warhol, and Banksy: these artists have become myths whose names began to work independently and set a new way for future art. His artistic method is the upcycling of modern and classical representations and interpretations.

The collaborations of Van Gogh and Ostap, duct tape, 2014-2015

1. Berlin Starry Night, 2014, duct tape, wood panel, 130×150 2. Still Unrest, 2015, duct tape, wood panel, 120×100

The Circles of Art, 2017, Ostap vs. Damien Hirst

The Circles of Art, 2017, stencil, spray paint, canvas, 140×140 cm

Starting in 2018, Ostap creates a series of bas-relief self-portraits on the streets made of duct and gaffer tape. He uses the technique of domestic, misappropriated use of the material.

Selfie (The Deaf Ears), 2018-2019, duct tape street art

Selfie (series), 2018-2019, duct tape

Selfie (series), 2018-2019, duct tape paste-ups

Selfie (series), 2018-2019, duct tape

Ostap currently lives with his wife and two daughters in Berlin and continues to be active on the street, while also working with museums, and participates in artistic, social, and commercial projects. He interacts with clients in a new context.

Author: Alexandra Kriksunova.

Links (Press)

About Selfmadecrew profile on the Urban Nation Museum website: Link.

About Ostap profile on the Urban Nation Museum website: Link.

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