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August 6, 2009

sand drawing

sometimes cheesy music, spectacle and strange, obsessive talent come together in the right way :: click below to watch ::

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Comments (36)

Very nice video. Stunning imagery and impressive technique to convey it.

FWIW, if anyone is curious, much of the string-quartet instrumental music is by the band "Apocalyptica".

Posted by: Tracy at August 6, 2009 11:15 PM

is this "animation"?

it's certainly performance art.

"performance animation"?

Posted by: zach blume at August 6, 2009 11:43 PM

Nice piece of art. I'm impressed.

Posted by: Alex at August 6, 2009 11:59 PM

Wow. That's justs incredible and very unique.

I'm not positive but the song that starts playing at 6:38 is Nothing Else Matters by Metallica.

Posted by: Harland at August 7, 2009 1:34 AM

Russia's got talent! There were sublime moments in there. I wish all sorts of live performance could connect like that. She got them in the heart.

Posted by: Shelley Noble at August 7, 2009 1:53 AM

Also worth plugging Syrinx, by the late Ryan Larkin.

Posted by: Pseudonym at August 7, 2009 3:40 AM

Can't believe I just watched this for 9 minutes, barely blinking in case I missed something. Impressive!

Posted by: Mich at August 7, 2009 8:40 AM

The audience reaction is interesting. The artist must be tapping into some powerful national identity/mythology.

Posted by: Mountzionryan at August 7, 2009 10:40 AM

is that 'the unforgiven' by metallica playing at the end there? sweet.

Posted by: esseree at August 7, 2009 2:21 PM

This girl is truly remarkable. She proves that not all talent requires singing, dancing or talking!!! She has some mad talent

Posted by: Andrew S.R. at August 7, 2009 2:38 PM

this is frikkin amazing...

unfortunately the solemnity is somewhat lessened around 6:50 when you realize she's using an apocalyptica cover of Metallica.

Posted by: cyn derblock at August 7, 2009 2:45 PM

That's amazing. I don’t know if you saw these commercials from Qwest in your part of the country, but they were pretty amazing a couple years ago.

Must be the same person doing them, I'd imagine.

Posted by: Royal at August 7, 2009 2:50 PM

i love it when art does that thing it's supposed to do.

yes that is a metallica tune at the end.

thanks for posting the link, ze.

Posted by: tommy at August 7, 2009 3:06 PM

This was awesome. When it started, I thought it was just going to be a drawing, not a seamless flow from one drawing to the next. An amazing performance.

Posted by: kiyote at August 7, 2009 3:07 PM

Damn copyright restrictions

Posted by: Tor at August 7, 2009 3:09 PM

I do believe it's the string quartet "Apocolyptica" doing "Nothing Else Matters" at the end there. What I want to know is what that second song that plays is, in Russian. Kinda a slow lullaby sounding one.

Posted by: JBlade at August 7, 2009 3:28 PM

It's actually in Ukraine...and she has a YouTube channel:


Posted by: SBinCB at August 7, 2009 3:43 PM

Beautiful video. Does it seem like she is telling the story of one particular woman? I didn't quite follow all the scenes in the story if there was one, but it sure was pretty. :)

Posted by: Sarah at August 7, 2009 4:11 PM

This national thing you refer to is WWII, don't forget Hitler lost the war thanks to enormous sacrifices of the Russian population. The Americans only came in when the changes turned in favor of the Russians, before that they were totally indifferent....

I think the cheesy music is part of the story, and yes in the end it is Metallica's unforgiven, played by Apocalyptica (like someone else mentioned before)

Posted by: piet at August 7, 2009 7:35 PM

To help clarify a bit, the text she writes at the end is "you are always near"

Posted by: Yodster at August 7, 2009 9:11 PM

The transformation of the sand woman to the soundtrack of Schindler's List really got to me.

Posted by: AlexBTetra at August 7, 2009 9:24 PM

When she wrote "You will always be with us" at the end, I started to tear up. Incredible...absolutely incredible.

Posted by: Michael D at August 8, 2009 3:01 AM

Where do you find this stuff, Ze? That was truly impressive. Is there a Russian sand drawing tradition that we Americans just don't know about?

Posted by: Rosa at August 8, 2009 3:59 AM

My mistake the song at the end is an Apocalyptica cover of Metallica's song 'Nothing Else Matters'.

Posted by: Harland at August 8, 2009 4:18 AM

Hello ZeFrank :S
I really wish i could see that vid :(

But i lives in sweden and if i click this vid. it says:

"This video is not available in your country due to copyright restrictions."

And i am mad on those copyrights stuffs :S

I wanna see the video somehow :(

Bye from a deaf swedish guy :(

Posted by: ted jonsson at August 8, 2009 5:02 AM

It's a love story that takes place before and after WWII hence the date of 1946 at the end of the piece. I'm not by any means an expert on soviet history but I'm into soviet cameras and it's a must to know that the war was very hard to the Russian people.

The Soviet Union lost the most people from the war; depending on were you look the deaths caused by the war about 50% of those are from the Soviet Union. That translates to about 12% of the population was wiped out prior to the war. On top of that a lot of damage was done to major cities to firebombing, Stalin's policies and huge cutting back on basic supplies made it hard to live in post war Soviet Union. This is still a delicate issue to Russians/Ukraninans and the other former Soviet satellite countries because just so much was lost and it took a long time to rebound from. To show how big of an issue this is it's not hard to find someone that will say that Russia is still feeling the effects of WWII to this day.

My Russian isn't good and I don't know my cursive Cyrillic alphabet so I can't tell what she wrote in the sand at the end but the title is "Requiem from the Sand" so it is not hard to imagine that it's dedicated to all the people who died in the war.

Posted by: Julian at August 8, 2009 6:36 AM

Nicely done artistry which makes an emotional connection. Thanks Ze.

Here's an older example I've always found entrancing.

Posted by: Jeff S at August 8, 2009 11:37 AM

For a moment I thought I was going to be bored watching this

The changes in the mood were so tragic it made me feel sad
And this is all live, music timed perfectly with the drawer
The pictures are so clear, the figures so easy to see, the message so clear

Thank you once again ZeFrank for bringing brilliance to us

Posted by: Dizzy at August 8, 2009 11:41 AM

I remember watching various animations during film class-the Yuogslavian animators, and I'm guessing subsequently many Eastern European animators, are beyond fantastic in both talent and imagination. the fact that there was not a dry eye in the house proves just how touching and great her work is, not just in talent but in the message it conveys. I think the emotion stems not just from cultural identity, but in the basis that Eastern Europe has always been a place of turmoil, as one Eastern European author wrote in his book, that you can put events in accordances to the massacres that have happened. It is a very beautiful piece and I hope she goes far. It would be interesting to see her work with the likes of italian band PFM, who during their last NEARfest performance used film shorts among their visuals.

Posted by: Jen Zatoth at August 8, 2009 1:11 PM

Posted by: laz1 at August 8, 2009 6:26 PM

Posted by: Paperotta at August 8, 2009 6:28 PM

At 1:50 of the video. Radio Address by VM Molotov June 22, 1941

Citizens of the Soviet Union!

Today, 22 of June at 4 o'clock in the morning, without any claims to the Soviet Union without declaring war, German troops attacked our country, attacked our borders in many places, and subjected to bombing from their airplanes our cities...


Posted by: laz1 at August 8, 2009 8:15 PM

It's like Bob Ross with sand.

Posted by: alan at August 9, 2009 12:37 PM

This is actually shot in Ukraine, and has little to do with Russia's hard times during the war. Being brought up by grandparents who lived and left Ukraine during the war, I can say that they (and pretty much all of Ukraine) felt no solidarity with the Russians, who forced many into slave labor, and used their soldiers as even more "worthless" cannon fodder against the Germans.

Posted by: Michael at August 10, 2009 8:24 AM

true human artistic emotion that escapes in so many simple and beautiful ways in our world.
and here is something to ponder....

Washington, DC Metro Station on a cold January morning in 2007. The man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time approx. 2 thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.
After 3 minutes a middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule.
4 minutes later:
The violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk.
6 minutes:
A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.
10 minutes:
A 3-year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced their children to move on quickly.
45 minutes:
The musician played continuously. Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money, but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32.
1 hour:
He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.
No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a true story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the Metro Station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste, and people's priorities The questions raised: "In a common place environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?"
...it's time to slow down, educate ourselves instead of hating and respect our life on earth and share ...like you do Ze...(tears) love it

Posted by: nancy pene at August 10, 2009 6:25 PM

yes that was Nothing Else Matters ... from the same album as Enter Sandman ... hmmm

Posted by: kevin Travers at August 12, 2009 12:12 PM

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