In 2018, the famous Ukrainian festival of contemporary art ГОГОЛЬFEST moves south to a small city of Mariupol. While various regions and cities of Ukraine develop their art scene, Kiev has some aces up its sleeve too. The following are 15 of the numerous upcoming art, photo and sculpture exhibitions in Kiev that are a must-visit in 2018.
PinchukArtCentre 2018 Award Nominees
The famous gallery located in the center of Kiev, PinchukArtCentre hosts an exhibition of the 2018 PinchukArtCentre 2018 Award Nominees. The award is aimed at popularizing the works of the junior Ukrainian artists up to the age of 30. The lucky winner of the main prize, UAH 250 000 and internships with the leading world artists, will be announced at the end of April. For now, visitors are welcome to enjoy the works of artists from all regions of Ukraine that reflect on various topics from war and politic narratives to self-realization and utopic ideas. The entrance is free.
When: February 24 — May 13
Future Generation Art Prize 2017 Winner: Dineo Seshee Bopape
Another Kiev exhibition hosted by PinchukArtCentre is a mono exposition of the South African artist Dineo Seshee Bopape. The winner of the 4-th International Future Generation Art Prize 2017 will present her intriguing works, all connected to the topic of earth. The link is quite literally — halls of PinchukArtCentre will be covered with samples of earth collected from dozens of spiritual places around the world, including Ukraine. Bopape uses crystals, clay, and gold foil to illustrate humanity’s invasion in the natural order and destroying in creation.
When: February 24 — May 12
Read: Most Expensive World Artists
Noble Families and Taras Shevchenko
A must-visit exhibition to explore Ukrainian history and culture is hosted by Taras Shevchenko National Museum in Kiev. The collection of art tells a story of the Ukrainian elite of the 19th—20th centuries that are all linked by the persona of the great talent of Ukraine Taras Hryhorovych Shevchenko. Sure enough, original works by Shevchenko full of colors and liveliness are a part of the exhibition as well. The entrance is UAH 35 for adults and UAH 15 for kids. Besides, curators of the exhibition organize free excursions to narrate the visuals.
When: March 22 — May 24
This exhibition is a part of the massive French Spring 2018 festival in Kiev. Following the discourse of author’s role in art, French photographer Philippe Bertrand and Ukrainian artist Nikolay Belous united their works in a single exhibition, where the styles and cultural background clash in a wondrous symbiosis. Bertrand chooses a black-and-white format for his photos, while Bilous adds bright colors, creating multilayered opposites in style and narrative. The result can be observed in Kiev art gallery TSEKH / ЦЕХ. Entrance is free.
When: April 6 — June 30
Read: 3 Ukrainian Murals in Top of the World
TSUM Department Store located in the center of Kiev is an often host of various exhibitions. This spring, visitors will have a chance to attend an art expo of the contemporary Ukrainian artist Yuliia Mokhovikova. Yuliia’s works had been recently purchased by the famous Hollywood actress of Ukrainian descent Milla Jovovich. Renowned and appreciated worldwide, the artist reflects on the theme of survival in human society versus the animal world. Golden smears, ironic slogans and bold contours present in pictures at an exhibition all help to expose this opposition.
When: April 13 — May 20
Нестійкі об’єкти / Unstable Objects
What is an unstable object? It’s a mirror the observers discover themselves in, the sense of being and remedy from the unstable position we hold in this universe. The new object exhibition by contemporary Ukrainian artist Oleksandr Liapin is held in the Я / Ya Gallery located in Podil district in Kiev and opens up a veil of absurdism, where bright colors and sharp objects resonate with the state of today’s world. The entrance is free.
When: April 18 — May 7
Read: Famous Ukrainian Art: Modern Artists
Classics of Ukrainian 20th Century Art
Not so many people know that works by Ukrainian artists of the 20th century are in fact one of the most expensive artifacts sold on various art auctions in the country and around the world. For instance, paintings by Mykola Hlushchenko are estimated in USD 100 000. Kiev dwellers have a unique chance to see such works of art on an exhibition held in the Golden Section auction house. Rare 45 paintings and graphic works by Maximilian Voloshin, Adalbert Erdeli, Mykola Hlushchenko, Maria Prymachenko and many other famous Ukrainian artists are now available for sale. The entrance is free.
When: April 20 — May 10
Bicycle Boom of the 1890s
A quite unusual position on the list is a bike expo held at the Kiev National Museum of History of Ukraine. The event will show numerous vintage bicycles and introduce the public to the cycling history of Kiev with all its peculiarities and interesting facts that date back to the late 19th century. The entrance is free.
When: April 24 — May 29
Read: Museum of Vintage Macs Opened in Kyiv
Hungarian-Ukrainian Artist István Molnár Exhibition
In the late 20th century the Carpathian region became a booming center of Ukrainian art where new movements appeared quickly and flourished extensively. Luckily, we don’t need a time machine to witness the wonders of art — in spring 2018 a Kiev culture lab Educatorium presents an exhibition of one of the most renowned representatives of Ukrainian expressionism István Molnár. Often compared to Egon Schiele, István was not only an artist but also a founder of the St. Pauli Guys rock-band that performed in 90s Uzhhorod. The bright and unusual works introduce visitors to multiple sides of the artist’s life. The entrance is free.
When: April 26 — May 9
Проявлення / Manifestation
A nice chance to get acquainted with a piece of Lviv in Kiev is a spring art expo of a contemporary Ukrainian artist Yurii Koval. The exhibition is held in one of the first galleries of contemporary art in Ukraine Karas Gallery and features works that reflect on the humanity’s inner state of mind: fears, anxieties, and the eternal question of the meaning of life. According to the gallery’s owner, Yurii Koval is one of the brightest minds of the young generation of Ukrainian artists. His works are balancing on the thin line between surrealism and hyperrealism. The entrance is free.
When: April 26 — May 15
Read: New Art and Cultural Spaces in Kyiv
Воїни світу / Warriors of Light
Taras Shevchenko National Museum in Kiev is not only a source of local art but also an often host of international photo exhibitions in Ukraine. The new spring expo Warriors of Light presents a series of military photos by Oleh Zabielin used as illustrations to numerous articles in New York Post, Deutsche Welle, and The Huffington Post. Various portraits and action scenes feature military people from Ukrainian soldiers to the American S.W.A.T. unit in all their glory. The entrance is UAH 35 for adults and UAH 15 for kids.
When: May 2 — May 13
A bright international art project in the framework of cooperation between Mexico and Ukraine will open in the beautiful Nature Reserve Sophia of Kiev in May 2018. The expo will present traditional Mexican art form amate, which in fact refers to a type of paper that has been manufactured in Mexico since the pre-Columbian era. Intricate works will show history, cultural, and religious beliefs of Mesoamerican peoples, including Maya and Aztecs, in great detail. To visit the exhibition you’ll need an initiation, which can be received via event’s Facebook page.
When: May 4 — June 3
Read: Ukrainian Folk Art
Прощавай, слово!.. / Goodbye, word!..
Museum of History of Kiev will take visitors on a journey to the Transcarpathian region via the exhibition of contemporary art in all forms and shapes. The younger generation of Transcarpathian artists reflects on the issues of legacy, traditions, and communication between past and present. The evolution of the traditional art school is unstoppable — so what’s next? The collective loneliness and critical approach to Ukrainian mainstream art inspired this massive art expo featuring paintings, graphics, photos, objects, and installations. The entrance fee can be found at the ticket office of the museum.
When: May 4 — May 22
Kyiv Art Week
The yearly event held in Kiev is dedicated to various themes concerning Ukrainian art space. This year, the festival is focused on integrating Soviet-era monuments in the urban Kiev space, which is one of the most discussed topics in contemporary culture. Visitors will be able to witness works of more than 30 leading Ukrainian and foreign galleries on the traditional part of the fest’s program — Kiev Art Fair, hosted by Toronto-Kiev business center right near the St. Nicholas Cathedral. The event is kid-friendly, so various entertainment events and concerts for kids included in the fest’s program will be a good occasion to go out on a weekend with family in Kiev.
When: May 23 — 27
Read: Famous Ukrainian Artists of 20th Century
220 Abstract Art Fest
Finally, the large art event of summer 2018 will take place in Pavlovka ArtGallery located near the picturesque Podil district in Kiev. The 220 Abstract Art fest will introduce the dwellers of the capital to works of contemporary Ukrainian artists. The event will grasp multiple areas of creative work from traditional photography, graphics, and paintings to computer graphics, sculpture, and cinema. The entrance fee is to be announced.
When: June 22 — July 7
Kiev art scene is quite busy with ever-changing exhibitions and installations that pop up in the news every day. Luckily, art in Ukraine is easily accessed for the curious minds.
Photo sources: PinchukArtCentre, 220 Abstract Art Fest, Kyiv Art Week Facebook pages, vesti-ukr.com, 061.ua, tsekh.com.ua, artukraine.com.ua, artchive.ru, hmarochos.kiev.ua, zakarpat.brovdi.art, artslooker.com, etsy.com, varosh.com.ua, unsplash.com. All images belong to their rightful authors.