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Commercial Success of Modern Ukrainian Painting

Recently, a number of Ukrainian painters were presented on auctions at the world famous auction house Sotheby’s. For the first time a piece of Ukrainian art appeared at Sotheby’s on June 9, 2009. The auction that took place in London was a specialized Russian/Ukrainian Contemporary Art event. The sale of 9 out of 19 works by the Ukrainian painters indicated a successful market entry.

Phillips de Pury & Co, a renowned auction house and art dealership, also featured Ukrainian paintings. In May of 2011 the painting by Anatoliy Kryvolap “Step” set a record for the Ukrainian art after it was bought for USD 98,5 thousand securing its position in the top 20 lots at the auction.

Kryvolap is an abstract painter who is focused on color as a means of broadcasting the sensations. The painter is sometimes called the founder of the new Ukrainian landscape painting.

Alexander Roitburd is another known Ukrainian painter whose work “Goodbye Caravaggio” was sold for USD 97,000 at Phillips de Pury & Co. Roitburd’s style is a mix of academic painting and postmodernism.

A painting by Olexandr Klymenko “India. Goa” (2009) was sold for USD 25,000 at Phillips de Pury & Co auction on June 28-29, 2011, in London. “India. Goa” is a contemporary abstract painting.

For the first time ever a Ukrainian painting was presented at Phillips de Pury & Co in 2010 and was sold for USD 4,400. The experts of the company chose Natalia Chernega’s painting “Not Allowed for Three!” for its exotic oriental motives, which is an unusual trend in the Ukrainian art.

In 2007 a 1924 painting “V Tserkvi” (“In a Church”) by the Ukrainian artist David Burlyuk was sold for USD 650,000.

Modern Ukrainian painting reflects the most current cultural phenomena of the world. In 2011 another painting by a Ukrainian artist managed to get a USD 18,750 bid and the objects portrayed in the work of art were quite peculiar. The painting titled “Borat-Kazakhstan-Baikonur” depicts an ironic portrait of the unorthodox personality Sasha Baron Cohen in a Soviet space suit.

Another prominent Ukrainian painter is Ivan Marchuk. He is the founder of his own style – “pliontanysm”, a neologism created of the Ukrainian word for the verb “to weave”. Marchuk’s works are really elaborate and sophisticated, they contain plenty of details. The International Academy of Modern Art in Rome, Italy, chose Ivan Marchuk to be the honorary member of the scientific council of the Academy in 2006. This is an unprecedented case in the history of Ukrainian art. Marchuk also made it to the British list “100 Living Geniuses” in 2007.

Official Web site of Sotheby’s

Official Web site of Phillips de Pury & Co