Olga G. Svetlichnaya (1915-1997) attended the Surikov Art Institute in Moscow from 1934 until 1946. At the Surikov she studied in the workshops of Igor Grabar and Sergei Gerasimov. In 1937 she married fellow student Yuri P. Kugach and in 1939 had a son Mikhail Y. Kugach. In 1943 she and other talented students from the Surikov were evacuated to Samarkand to escape the advancing Nazi army. She graduated from the Surikov in 1946. Perhaps overshadowed by her famous husband's work, Svetlichnaya is best known for her intimate landscapes of the Tver region near the Academic Dacha. Today she is revered as the matriarch of the famous Kugach family of artists.