The PinchukArtCentre (Kyiv, Ukraine), Victor Pinchuk Foundation and M HKA (Antwerp, Belgium) in partnership with Bozar (Brussels, Belgium), the European Parliament (Brussels, Belgium), and the Office of the President of Ukraine present Imagine Ukraine, a three-part project continuing the cultural front against Russia’s war in Ukraine, the idea launched by the PinchukArtCentre during the 59th Venice Biennale. The project is possible because of the support of the Flemish Community.
Imagine Ukraine is an ambitious project that aims to reach out beyond the immediate urgencies, however pressing those continue to be. It wants to open up to the larger reflection and longer-term perspective that are needed for the future. Europe needs an enhanced focus on Ukraine, its concreteness and complexity, its possibilities and flight lines. Our joint understanding needs to grow.
The project is launched through three exhibitions, starting from the works of Ukrainian artists in the collection of the Flemish Community, presented at M HKA Imagine Ukraine - Art as a Critical Attitude (May 6 - August 21, 2022), Bozar Council Room Imagine Ukraine - Small and Big Stories (May 6 - June 21, 2022), and Parlamentarium of the European Parliament The Artist as a Witness (May 6 - September 30, 2022). These are the starting points to initiate a reflective space about the past, present and future of Ukraine as a part of Europe.
In the European Parliament, the perspective is that of the artist as a witness, in Bozar the tension between big narratives and the reality of human lives, in M HKA art as a critical mind.
That space will be furthered by reflective materials on Ukraine, brought together by the PinchukArtCentre, and by a series of events: lectures, debates, film screenings and other activities, by each of the partners (the program will be announced on the website). Together with the artistic proposals, this creates a reflective platform that will also take the form of a website, built by M HKA and jointly developed by M HKA and PinchukArtCentre.
The website will be in English, Dutch, French and Ukrainian. It will initially serve as a context for the exhibitions. In a second instance, it will make the materials of the exhibitions and public events accessible for a wider audience. In a third instance, it wants to make space for the broader solutions we search and find as a society. Imagine Ukraine only operates within the ecology of activities that are at this moment undertaken by a multitude of actors. It therefore also wants to insist and support the continued work of institutional and citizen engagement.
Imagine Ukraine aims at a long-term commitment of presentation, reflection and communication. In the end, Europe and Ukraine jointly need to develop structural responses to their common future and that with the wider world.
The exhibitions are curated by Bart De Baere, Director of M KHA, and Björn Geldhof, Artistic Director of the PinchukArtCentre.
Imagine Ukraine - Art as a Critical Attitude
with works by:
Sergey Bratkov, Davyd Chychkan, Nikita Kadan, Nikolay Karabinovych and Alevtina Kakhidze; with a new mural drawing by Anna Scherbyna; and with videos of young Ukrainian artists - Yarema Malashchuk and Roman Khimei, Daniil Revkovskiy and Andriy Rachinskiy, Dana Kavelina, Nikolay Karabinovych, and Yana Bachynska - introduced with a video of the song Hug Me by Svyatoslav Vakarchuk and Akustikos Art Group.
Bozar, Council Room
Imagine Ukraine - Small and Big Stories
with works by:
Sergey Bratkov, Nikita Kadan, Alevtina Kakhidze, Lesia Khomenko, Oksana Shachko and Anna Zvyagintseva.
Parlamentarium of the European Parliament
The Artist as a Witness
with works by:
Sergey Bratkov, Oleksandr Burlaka, Nikita Kadan, Alevtina Kakhidze, Nikolay Karabinovych, Zhanna Kadyrova and Lesia Khomenko.
The access to all of the exhibitions is free.
The works are in the exhibitions complemented by the texts by Serhii Plokhii, Mykhailo S. Hrushevs'kyi Professor of Ukrainian History and Director, Ukrainian Research Institute, Harvard University, and Thomas Weihe, former head of the board, the Victor Pinchuk Foundation, by videos with contextual reflections by Timothy Snyder, Levin Professor of History, Yale University, and by registrations of debates.