A Portrait of an Injured Chuhuiv Resident Was Sold at a Charity Auction for $100, 000

On March 29, a portrait of a Chuhuiv resident Olena Kurylo, who was injured under the Russian shelling, was sold at Heritage Auctions for $100, 000. The funds will be transferred to the Ukrainian Red Cross, says the portrait’s author, an American artist of Russian origin Zhenya Gershman.

The portrait is called “First Face of War: Intimate Portrait of a Ukrainian Teacher”. The painting was based on Wolfgang Schwan’s photo, which was made in the city of Chuhuiv on February 24. In the picture, a severely injured woman looks straight at the camera.

Gershman says that she saw this photo on her birthday, on February 24, the first day of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine. “I saw those beautiful blue eyes, which seemed to speak right to me, and I instantly knew that I had to draw her portrait,” Zhenya recalls. She posted a finished painting on her social media on March 1. Eventually, she decided to sell it at auction.

Zhenya Gershman was born in Moscow. Currently, she lives and works in Los Angeles. Olena Kurylo worked as a choreographer for 30 years; for the last four years, she worked as a nanny. On February 24, she was injured in the shelling of her apartment building. A few days ago, the woman went to Poland for treatment.

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