On November 27, exhibition of Ukrainian contemporary art “Power Verticals. Plywood Colonnades” was presented at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.
The exhibition is the first ever curatorial project to be run in the recently created art space of Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry. The project is also unique for Ukraine’s official bodies as MFA becomes the first Ukrainian government agency to implement a curatorial project within its own premises.
The Ministry invited independent curators Lizaveta German and Maria Lanko to develop the concept of the project and run it. The exhibition includes art works by Anna Zvyagintseva, SOSka group, Yuriy Kruchak, Andrij Bojarov, Lesya Khomenko, Andriy Stegura, Rostyslav Koterlin, Alevtina Kakhidze, Anatoliy Belov, R.E.P. group, Eugenia Belorusets ,and Sasha Kurmaz. Exposition design was developed by architect and artist Oleksandr Burlaka.
“The exhibition presents the Ukrainian artistic practices of the previous decade. The subject of artistic research covers problems and phenomena outed from the official and public discourses. They are not part of the conventional representation of the country for both, external and internal audiences. In this regard, the exhibition contradicts the context of it presentation in a closed state body. The exhibition focuses on the emancipated artistic view on concealed, unwanted and unpopular topics, traumatic experiences and inconvenient stories constituting together the “other” picture of the country, free of ideological structures and retarded stereotypes. Being presented in the MFA space designated to host official international delegations, area unfamiliar to the contemporary art and public debate, the exhibition offers to viewers possible models for gasping Ukraine in the period of reloading social ideas – Ukraine as a complex and diverse country rich in individual positions and thoughts”, curators commented on the project.
Foreign Ministry decided to implement the project as another step towards reforming approaches to the representation of Ukrainian culture for foreign audiences. Traditionally, MFA building had been decorated with Soviet and post-Soviet art works. Nowadays, officials and foreign delegations visiting the Ministry will have the opportunity to enjoy Ukrainian contemporary art. Another goal of the exhibition is to create brand new atmosphere within the workspace of Ukrainian diplomats.
"We have to demonstrate contemporary Ukraine to the world and to ourselves. We have to demonstrate what contemporary Ukraine is about. It's the country we had been fighting for. We do keep fighting and we will win", Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavlo Klimkin said at the opening ceremony.
Journalists, artists and honorary guests, including director of "Mystetsky Arsenal" Natalia Zabolotnaya, film producer Oleg Kohan, artist Victor Sidorenko, galerist Pavlo Hudymov and other admirers of contemporary art attended the opening ceremony on November 27.
Due to the official status of the MFA building and security restrictions we are going to organize special curatorial tours to avail wider audiences of the opportunity to enjoy the exhibition.