“The Promise of Freedom” exhibition opening in Vilnius, Lithuania
THE PROMISE OF FREEDOM
VILNIUS ART FAIR, VILNIUS, LITHUANIA
07/10/2022 – 09/10/2022
Shcherbenko Art Centre presents the project “The Promise of Freedom” within the Vilnius Art Fair, in Vilnius, Lithuania, which will take place on October 7-9, 2022. The exhibition will include the works of the following artists: Vasyl Bazhai, Oleg Dimov, Pavlo Kovach (senior), Mykola Kryvenko, Anton Sayenko, Tiberiy Szilvashi, Maryna Talutto, Myroslav Vayda, and Vasylyna Vrublevska.
Different generations of Ukrainian abstract artists, various mediums (graphic painting, sculpture, photography, and objects), and works were created in different years (before and during the full-scale war of Russia against Ukraine). But they are all united in their desire for more than just verbal freedom.
Abstraction necessitates either detachment or, on the contrary, complete immersion in reality and the search for meaning. This demands concentration and a certain kind of meditative state within the creative process. For this, the artist must make a gesture of liberation – from circumstances, from the pressure of cultural symbols and ideas, he must create his own nonverbal communication system through which the viewer can be given the opportunity for a liberating gesture for himself or herself.
By analogy, Ukrainian civil society engages in a liberation act, sacrificing comfort, peace, health, and people’s lives. This is required by freedom, which is not a result, but rather a long (possibly infinite) process. Objectless art is also a never-ending process that demands the abandonment of everyday life and rationality. It requires freedom for perception and comprehension.
The most important aspect, however, is that art provides this freedom. Abstract art is unique in that it expresses itself primarily through an appeal to the roots, to the origins of humankind’s visual culture, as well as to folk symbols that serve as the foundation of a nation’s cultural code. From an ornament to an objectless canvas is an eternity, but at the same time they are close, even merged in unison.
This unification pervades Ukrainian abstract works. They were born in a land soaked in blood and brimming with the spirit of freedom struggle. Tiberiy Szilvashi, an artist, observes: “The uniqueness of art in our time is the constant attempt to break free from certainties. This process is the essence of the question of aesthetic mystery. Where is the flow that art calls us to? Is this a cry for liberty, or vice versa? Is the visible meaningful, or does it have a nature that goes beyond the verbal?”*. The answer is entirely up to the viewer.
* “Objectless art: 5 artists answer 3 questions”. The author is Nastia Kalyta. Source: https://store.supportyourart.com/stories/velyke-kolo/
Shcherbenko Art Centre
Created by Ukrainian curator Maryna Shcherbenko. The aim of the centre is to create opportunities for dialogue between the art world and a broad audience. Shcherbenko Art Centre arranges the exhibitions and works as a venue for lectures, panel discussions, workshops with leading masters of contemporary art in Ukraine and other countries.