VoloshynGallery presents a solo exhibition of the artist Yuri Solomko, a bright representative of Ukrainian contemporary art. The exhibition will show works in the artist’s traditional technique of painting and drawing on maps, as well as new objects that can be considered both as introductory elements to the paintings and individual exhibits.
The geopolitics theme has been a leitmotif in all Yuri Solomko’s works. Since the 90s, the artist has been working with maps. He has invented his own art language expressing the reflection on the geopolitical events talking place in the world and identifying its various implications. The works in this exhibition are covering the logic continuation of his art career. Solomko says that a geographical map is one of the most powerful symbols created by a civilization. In his art works, he adds even more meaning to the information already contained there.
Many paintings and some showpieces of SEX AND POLITICS project depict love and erotic scenes that are characteristic for Solomko’s style. The theme of the exhibition is utterly relevant, as sex and political power have always been topics of interest, at least as two underlying causes for human activity. In many cultures, people have never separated these concepts. For example, the ancient Chinese believed that sexual potency of the head of the Celestial Empire was the key to the prosperity of the population living there. The Emperor had to alternate righteous work on the management of the state with bedroom pleasures, therefore the state employed the whole staff of courtesans. Among the objects in the exhibition is shown a sculpture of a phallus "XXX". Yuri Solomko says that the phallus is exactly the same political symbol of power as the scepter and the orb. It is no accident that in the Neolithic period cave paintings, the tribal leader could always be identified by the longest phallus. It would mean he has a lot of women, many children, simply put, is the actual father of his tribe. Of course, this statement may be relative, but on the other hand if all the libido of the head of state goes into politics, you can surely expect trouble. All of the complexes, manias and phobias such a "father of the nation" such rulers will vent to their own people and neighboring states.
The characteristic feature of the exhibition SEX AND POLITICS is the author drawing two lines – a modern interpretation of our contemporary world with its current problems, and the second is the world of the past, whose events allegorically remind us of the tide of history. Sometimes these two lines intersect, sometimes they are coming apart. In other words, Yuri may represent a modern story on an ancient map or vice versa. To select the second theme in this project, the author for the first time ever refers to the use of antique maps, while some of the stories cited by the artist send us back to another era.
Yuri Solomko was born in 1962 in Crimea. In 1986 he graduated from Krasnodar Art College, and in 1992 the Kyiv State Art Institute (now National Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture). Yuri Solomko was one of the members of the famous art-association "Paris Commune" (1989-1994). In 1997 he was voted the Artist of the Year in the field of contemporary art at the International Art Festival in Kyiv, Ukraine. Apart from that, Yuri Solomko has been a multiple-winner of numerous grants and scholarships, a permanent participant of all major Ukrainian art events. Solomko’s works in different years were sold at such auctions as the Dorotheum (1999), Vienna, Austria; Sovkom (2008), Moscow, Russia; The Epoch (2009), The Golden Ratio (2011), Korners (2008, 2015), Kyiv, Ukraine; PhillipsdePury & company (2009, 2010, 2014, 2015) and in 2016 at Sotheby's, London, the UK. Currently Yury lives and works in Kyiv. Solomko’s works are in the collections of the National Art Museum, Kyiv, Ukraine; Russian State Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia; Duke University Museum, North Carolina, USA; Art center Henie, Onstad, Høvikodden, Oslo, Norway; Hradobank Art Collection, Kyiv, Ukraine as well as in Simon de Pury’s collection.
Voloshyn Gallery was founded in 2006 by spouses Max and Julia Voloshyn called Mystetska Zbirka Art Gallery. It is located in the cultural and historical center of Kyiv on Tereschenkivska street. Voloshyn Gallery is a gallery of modern and conceptual art, it is a platform for artistic experimentation, research and social projects.
The mission of gallery is popularization of Ukrainian art in Ukraine and abroad. Max and Julia Voloshyn actively represent Ukrainian art abroad, facilitating its integration into European cultural processes. In February 2014 Max and Julia presented the project "Ukraine. The archetype of freedom" in Vienna in the cultural and exhibition center Novomatic Forum. There were shown the works of 15 Ukrainian artists who embodied in their works the principle of freedom. In April 2015 at the initiative of the gallery the first Ukrainian art tour to the island of Cyprus called MAKE ART NOT WAR was organized. The project was attended by seven leading artists who presented their views on war and peace in Ukraine and in particular the historical context of the whole. In 2015, Max and Julia organized the project of Ukrainian artists in New York, which took place in the Ukrainian Institute of America. In June 2016 Ukrainian gallery represented the artists at SCOPE Basel; the most prestigious art fair Art Basel in the world.
Max and Julia Voloshyn actively support contemporary young Ukrainian artists and collect their works. In 2015, Max and Julia entered the top 30 Ukrainian collectors according to Forbes and became the youngest in this ranking. In the same year, Max and Julia came in a rating of Ukrainian Forbes: 30 successful Ukrainian, who are younger than 30.