The PinchukArtCentre presents “Borderline. Ukrainian Art 1985–2004” - a large scale group show of Ukrainian artists exploring development of the Ukrainian contemporary art from early 1980s till 2004 when the Orange Revolution had happened in the country. The exhibition investigates driving forces of socially and politically engaged art starting from “pre-perestroika” time. It presents more than 40 major group works by prominent Ukrainian artists and art groups whose practice has been defined during and shortly after the collapse of the USSR.
The project includes works by Sergey Bratkov, Oksana Chepelyk, Illya Chichkan, Oleg Golosiy, Yuri Leiderman, Pavlo Makov, Masoch Fund, Boris Mikhailov, Natsprom, Vlada Ralko, Alexander Roitburd, Jury Rupin, Andriy Sagaidakovsky, Arsen Savadov, Georgiy Senchenko, Oleg Tistol, Vasiliy Tsagolov, and Leonid Voitsekhov.
The artists in the exhibition have played a leading role to define the position of art in a post-soviet society and searched for ways to confront their own history, regain artistic freedom and develop a critical artistic voice. Through their work they often reflected, mirrored or responded upon a society that had to re-invent itself through instability, ideological shifts and social changes.
Björn Geldhof, Deputy Artistic Director of the PinchukArtCentre: “With this exhibition I try to create a position that will spark discourse on how to appreciate and understand the generation of artists who emerged during early 80ties and 90ties. The exhibition is a stand against formal appreciations but instead tries to offer a view that allows to see unifying driving forces within Ukrainian art.”
Throughout the exhibition, three main themes are formulated: “Perestroika”, “search for identity” (both personal and national) and “the corruption of morals”. These themes are traced through the different artistic practices in Ukraine between 1985 and 2004. The exhibition attempts to formulate an alternative view, away from a division into traditionally defined formal schools, in search for shared artistic driving forces that reveal an engagement in, and reflection of a country in transition and a social flux.
The exhibition is curated by Bjorn Geldhof, Deputy Artistic Director of the PinchukArtCentre and co-curated by the art centre’s junior curator Tatiana Kochubinska.