About Alisa

Alisa Duda, was born and grew up in Kaunas/Lithuania, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Decorative Art from Kaunas College of Art, and studied architecture at the Art Institute of Kaunas. After moving to Illinois, she studied graphic design at the Art institute of Chicago and received an Associate degree in Art from Harper College.

Currently, Alisa works in her home studio in Rolling Meadows, IL, and is a member of Oddball Art Labs, an artist collective based in Elgin IL. She uses all kinds of mediums for her paintings and a wide range of materials for crafting, installations, and all sorts of curious things.

Alisa Duda

About Yuri & Olga

Alisa Duda’s 2022 series titled “Yuri & Olga” is a continuation of an idea that began with the “3 Boys” series. Each was created using just one reference picture for the entire body of work. This method allowed the artist to explore a wide range of creative and technical solutions without losing overall visual consistency. The “Yuri & Olga” reference picture is a carefully staged studio photograph, taken in 1940’s post-war Lithuania. It portrays two beautiful children ages 6 and 2, whose enigmatic expressions make you endlessly wonder about the events behind the scene. Everyday people are always the main subjects in Alisa’s art. She thinks that people around us are as important and interesting as any celebrity. She also claims that old photographs are mistakenly thought of as being depressing, while in reality, the people of the past were as interesting and fun as the people of today.

So who are Yuri & Olga? Yuri is Alisa’s uncle whom she never met. He’s the middle boy from the “3 Boys” series. Yuri will forever remain a mystery to the artist, who portrays him by using symbolism, such as a forever-closed theater curtain, or dreamy eyes hiding in the shadow of the moon. Olga is Yuri’s younger sister, and Alisa’s mother. She was the biggest personality and influence in Alisa’s life. The artist remembers her mother as a storm of strong opinions, an artist with a never ending cup of coffee and forever smoldering cigarette in her ashtray. However, Alisa can only imagine her mother as a child, and imagine she does. The series incorporates Olga’s curious, creative, and humorous personality through playful solutions such as optical illusions and distortions, like a fun-house mirror effect.

Alisa Duda continues working on the “Yuri & Olga” series to this day, exploring the limits of her imagination with the limits of the physical media. The paintings range in multiple styles, mediums and sizes: from a 4×4 inch small painting to a 17×10 foot mural. Alisa is spending family time by taking her mom and uncle on a new and exciting creative adventure as often as she can. You can find the artist daydreaming about the series while driving or doing anything really. She gets her inspirations from other artists, and finds ideas from everyday life and objects. She wants to celebrate the wonderful and creative lives of the people in old family albums, and invites you to celebrate them too. With Yuri the Moon and Olga the Sun, the sky is the limit!

yuri & olga original front 2
yuri & olga original back 2

About 3 Boys

During the 2020 pandemic lockdown, Alisa Duda decided to improve her artistic skills by testing Malcolm Gladwell’s “10,000 hour rule” suggesting that it takes this much time of “intensive practice to achieve mastery of complex skill, like playing violin,” or becoming a great artist. Questioning her true artistic self, Alisa decided to invest her time by experimenting with styles, ideas, techniques and mediums while having one common element, a reference picture of her late uncle Jura with two of his friends. Alisa never met Jura, but she always had an intense longing for her lost uncle and sadness for the life he didn’t get to live, so she gave him a “second life.” Thus began the well-loved series of 3 Boys’ portraits peppered with slight humor. Unexpectedly, the short experiment grew into a long series that kept challenging Alisa’s creativity for three years.

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Street Art

  • 2023 September- Yuri & Olga: Travelers in Time & Space mural painted for the city of Elgin. Southeastern side of the 95 Symphony Way parking deck , Elgin, IL
  • 2021 August- Mural for Community Mini-mural Project. South Blvd west of Humphrey and east of Taylor, Oak Park IL.
  • 2021 August- 5 Drain Murals in Elgin, IL.
  • 2023, 2022, 2021, 2020 November- Holiday Window Decorations in Elgin, IL.

Solo Shows

  • 2023, August/ September- 3 Boys. Prairie Center for the Arts, Schaumburg IL
  • 2022, December- Featured artist at Riverlands Brewing Company, St. Charles IL
  • 2021, November- 3 Boys. Side Street Studio Arts, Elgin IL
  • 2016, July- Lana’s Dazzling Desserts, Wheeling IL

Group Shows