Kaleidoscope of (Hi)stories: Ukrainian Art 1912–2023

Kaleidoscope of (Hi)stories: Ukrainian Art 1912–2023

Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden

April 25, 2023
Kaleidoscope of (Hi)stories: Ukrainian Art 1912–2023
May 6–September 10, 2023
01067 Dresden
Instagram / Instagram

It is the first exhibition of its kind in Germany: the Albertinum of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden (SKD) is dedicating a comprehensive overview presentation of modern Ukrainian art. Paintings, sculptures, photographs, installations, video works, graphics and archives by around 50 artists represent Ukrainian art from the beginning of the 20th century to the present on 1,200 square metres and provide insights into the country’s turbulent history as well as its constant struggle for its own identity.

The exhibition Kaleidoscope of (Hi)stories: Ukrainian Art 1912-2023 deals with four main themes that overlap: Practices of Resistance, Culture of Memory, Spaces of Freedom and Thoughts on the Future. In them, the current situation combines with historical events, showing individual experiences and personal stories. Each position represents a particular microcosm interwoven with the history of the country and its heritage. This unfolds the complexity and diversity of today’s Ukrainian art scene. It deals with self-knowledge in Ukrainian history, takes an introspective look at its contemporary culture, analyses and describes the country in its complexity and resistance with the medium of modern and contemporary art.

The exhibition illustrates a cultural federalism that is essential to Ukrainian culture: it has not developed centrally in Kyiv alone, but in parallel in many unique cultural centres, such as Dnipro, Ivano-Frankivsk, Kharkiv, Lviv and Odessa. Among others, the post-independence period in the 1990s, the Revolution of Dignity from 2013 to 2014 and the period after the Russian annexation of Crimea are examined. With the Russian invasion since February 24, 2022, Ukrainian culture is experiencing a renewed decentralisation and nomadism. Many artists from these important cultural centres are forced to leave their cities and live as migrants scattered around the world.

To promote art production, new works by artists Nikita Kadan, Kateryna Lysovenko, Lada Nakonechna and Masha Reva will be presented. In this context, the SKD’s Kupferstich-Kabinett has also purchased five drawings and a carbon copy on carbon paper from the series “Drawing on Maidan” by the artist Lesia Khomenko. Paintings by the artist Kateryna Bilokur as well as numerous new productions travel outside the country for the first time. In dialogue, they show the continuity of culture and the sources of contemporary art in Ukraine since its beginnings from the avant-garde to the present.

The exhibition is assembled from private collections and museums, such as the National Art Museum of Ukraine (Kyiv), Odessa Art Museum, National Museum of Decorative Folk Art (Kyiv), Stedley Art Foundation (Kyiv), Prymachenko Family Foundation, Dovzhenko Centre, MOCA NGO, Artsvit Gallery (Dnipro) and Ya Gallery Art Center (Kyiv-Lviv). Loans from the Art Collection Telekom, the Akademie der Künste (Berlin), the Artothek of the German Bundestag and the Thyssen Bornemisza Art Collection 21 complete the show. After its run in Dresden, the exhibition will be on view at Museum de Fondatie in Zwolle, the Netherlands, from October 2023 to January 2024.

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Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
April 25, 2023

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