Thanks to the AdHoc-Fellowship “Weltoffenes Berlin” funded by the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe, the Berlin Artistic Research Grant Programme is able to grant three Ukrainian artists, Yevgenia Belorusets, Mykola Ridnyi and Volodymyr Vorotniov a fellowship in 2022/23.
Volodymyr Vorotniov, as many other artists from Ukraine, has been affected by the events on Kyiv Maidan in 2013-2014 and the following occupation of Crimea and parts of Donbas by putinist Russia. The full-scale invasion in 2022 has shifted the focus further on war, emergency and survival. The challenging circumstances force artists to engage in volunteering, cooperation, mobilization and to re-invent their role in the social fabric.
In 2017, Vorotniov took a piece of coal from the mine in his hometown in Western Ukraine and brought it along to Lysytschansk, the historical mining town in Donbas. The artist walked the distance of nearly 1000 km by foot, donating the coal to the local museum after this month-long journey. This gesture syncretically combined different fields of the artist’s interests, from contemporary ethnography, flaneurism, sports, labour study, to post-ideology and cultural heritage issues. The city of Lysytschansk has been recently occupied by the Russian invaders, but the documentation stand was evacuated in advance. Working with text, image and movement Vorotniov attempts to examine the paths of different artistic practices hurt by the war.