Currently, LAA‘s gallery ‘Arka’ (Aušros Vartų st. 5,Vilnius) hosts an exhibition ‘Spaces’ of five Ukrainian artists – Mykola Malyshko, Ihor Yanovych, Dmytro Moldovanov, Pavlo Makov, Andriy Sahaydakovskyy – curated by Pavlo Gudimov and created in collaboration with Ya Gallery. The exhibition is open until 6th of August. The exhibition collection is consisted of more than 60 works from Kyiv and Lviv. All the artworks reached Lithuania thanks to the sponsors of this project – the Lithuanian Culture Council, the Lithuanian Institute of Culture and the Lithuanian Embassy in Ukraine. The collection will be kept in Vilnius until the end of the war in Ukraine.
Presenting the exhibition, curator Pavlo Gudimov writes: ‘Today we are victims. But we do not want to be victims. Today we have a war raging on. But we did not want that war. Today, Ukraine is being talked about loudly all over the world. We wanted to be heard, but not for that reason. All nations speak the language of the people and the language of culture. It was our wish for Ukraine to be known as a cultural, beautiful and delicious country. Exhibition „Spaces“ is about us in the language of visual art. When we started preparing the exhibition at the invitation of the Lithuanian Artists Association and Arka Gallery and discussed the list of artists, I decided not to separate them, but to incite the cooperation of works of art by shuffling them in space. The exhibition presents artists of different geography and media, showing us as different and at the same time monolithic. During the war, everything changes its context. For example, wooden sculptures from the series „Ten Figures“ by Mykola Malyshko, which are falling apart, broken up into tiny pieces, are now perceived more sharply by viewers than before the war. Or Pavlo Makov’s graphic letters of the early 2000s, where a Soviet tin soldier attacks the Pentagon or the Fountain of Exhaustion, which this year represents Ukraine in the national pavilion of the Venice Biennale. Or the naive painting of Dmytro Moldovanov with images of people and animals on the verge of conflict, attack, sacrifice. Where there is a brown bear, which is traditionally associated with russia. The gesture of abstract art of the project „Form“ from Ihor Yanovych is close to the brutal nature of the surrounding events. Andriy Sahaidakovskyy – tortured, murdered on bloody rugs, who calls us to personal harmony and reflection. „Am rande der Welt“ – the end of the earth or the world with the familiar smoke above the horizon. How could this have happened before the war? Where do such coincidences and predictions come from? Did we come up with everything? Or feel it? Or are we just searching for them where we can find it? „Spaces“ is about the infinity of creativity, it’s about the strength of spirit, it’s about the strong voice of art at a time when it should be loud. Enjoy! Glory to Ukraine! ‘
Mykola Malyshko (b. 1938) is a sculptor living and working in the Kyiv region. His work is represented by large-format wooden anthropomorphic symbols-objects-obelisks.
Pavlo Makov (b. 1958) grew up in Crimea and Simferopol, graduated with a degree in graphic arts. Graphic prints exist in the artist’s work as a philosophical origin and concept – a trace of what is left behind. The artist is currently participating in the International Venice Biennale and representing Ukraine with Fountain of Exhaustion. Acqua Alta.
Dmytro Moldovanov (b. 1967) is an artist from Odessa, Ukraine’s most prominent representative of naive art. He has no degree in art, so his work is characterized by openness, naivety, and the expression of inner energy in his artworks.
Ihor Yanovich (b. 1944) has participated in more than 70 international projects and exhibitions. He works in the field of non-figurative painting. His works are related to musical compositions, he experiments a lot with techniques, often with industrial-type raw materials. His creative motto is that art does not necessarily have to be interpreted, but always requires the involvement of the subject and the autonomous experiential space of the viewer. The visual form here functions as the artist’s tool, but in his work, it is more secondary, leading to that which remains beyond the image.
Dmytro Moldovanov (b. 1967) is a Ukrainian primitivist artist, one of the leaders of naïve art in Ukraine. Artist explores the urban space by means of „naive“ painting. This non-professional art, which is free from academicism and in the Western world is close to the concept of „outsider art“, combines naive, primitive, folkloric and marginal. The intense color saturation of Rousseau’s famous jungle (he often uses fluorescent oil paint), the dreamy Eden filled with heavenly plants, the cohabitation of Man and Animal in Moldanova’s „Light Grass“ project inspired the creators of the Like studio design bureau to create several clothing collections. Artist is a big fan of Gauguin’s work, likes to listen to jazz. Lives and works in Mykolaiv and in the ancient fishing village of Parutino in the south of Ukraine, not far from the Olvia historical reserve.
Curator of the exhibition: Pavlo Gudimov (b. 1973) – founder of Ya Gallery (Kyiv and Lviv). He works in the fields of architecture, design, music, art publishing, and collecting. Main large-scale artistic projects: Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors. Exhibition (Art Arsenal, Kyiv; Palace of Arts, Lviv, 2016), Aeneid Project (National Art Museum of Ukraine, Kyiv, 2017), Svirzh Castle: Genesis (Svirzh Castle, 2018), Metropolis. Past Utopias of the Future (Art Arsenal, 2018; Center for Architecture, Design and Urban Planning “Powder Tower”, Lviv, 2018), Angels. Exhibition (Lviv National Gallery of Arts named after Borys Voznytsky, Lviv, 2019), Labyrinths of LKSF (Center for Architecture, Design and Urban Planning “Powder Tower”, Lviv, 2020).
The exhibition is open 7th July – 6th August, the gallery is open for visits from Tuesdau to Friday at 12–19 and on Saturday at 12–16. Venue address: Aušros Vartų st. 7, Vilnius.
The exhibition is supported by the Lithuanian Culture Council, the Lithuanian Institute of Culture and the Lithuanian Embassy in Ukraine.
Photography: Giedrius Akelis