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Art and Politics in Ukraine

Clown by Egor Petrov

Art and Politics in Ukraine

Clown by Egor PetrovPutin garnered support from an unlikely group of people, during last months invasion of Crimea.  Russian museum leaders and cultural institution head signed a letter of support in favor of Putin’s actions.  Surprising bunch, you might ask?  People worldwide were outraged by the arts sector support, especially in Russia and Ukraine.  A counter response was set up by launching ‘Artists Support Ukraine’, http://www.artistssupportukraine.com/, a site where artists and culture workers from around the world can post letters of support for Ukraine, creating a coalition of global support.  Notable artists, American Fred Tomaselli and Egyptian-Lebanese artist, Lara Baladi, have voiced their support through the initiative.
A well known Russian artists coalition, AES+F, have openly expressed their disappointment with their art leader colleagues that have supported Putin.  They released a statement that read in part, “Kiev’s unique experiences give everyone hope.  We understand it and support you in the pursuit of freedom.”
Meanwhile, in an exhibition opening this coming Friday, April 11, at the Vienna Kunstlerhaus, a show titled, I Am a Drop in the Ocean:  The Art of the Ukrainian Revolution, Ukrainian artists are showing pieces from as early as 2012, as they foresaw the coming political crisis.  The show runs through May 23.  http://www.k-haus.at/de/kuenstlerhaus/aktuell/ausstellung/229/i-am-a-drop-in-the-ocean.html
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