Kyiv Features First International Contemporary Sculpture Festival
Kyiv, June 4, 2012. Kyiv Sculpture Project is the first international festival of contemporary sculpture in Ukraine. The project gives new light to the idea of plastic arts as well as develops the potential role of sculptures for the city and its residents. The project is a collection of fifteen pieces by international artists from Australia,Great Brittan, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine. According to Ukrainian critics the project adheres to international standard and may grow as the newest city attraction. The exhibition will be on display for a month from June 2 until July 2, 2012.
A sense of artistic patriotism was in the air as Co-curator of Kyiv Sculpture Project and Curator of Yorkshire Sculpture Park Dr. Helen Pheby announced that nine of the fifteen artists showcasing their pieces in the exhibition were, in fact, Ukrainian, “Today is a very special day for Ukraine as we unite the distinct characteristics of art and culture with the works of art by nine Ukrainian artists. This is a chance for Ukraine to discover its talents.” It was a lengthy process, which each young artist underwent, to make it to Kyiv Sculpture Project displayed at the Botanical Garden.
The fifteen artists whose works were displayed at the festival have been chosen competitively by an expert committee. 297 artists from 39 countries submitted their applications for the contest, which took place from October 2011 to January 2012. Now, in the last leg of the competition, the fifteen sculptors will compete for the main prize of EUR 6,000. A special prize of EUR 3,000 will be granted to the best young Ukrainian artist, and another special prize from Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s Marie Claire will grant one talented artist with the title of “Best Ukrainian Artist”. Lastly, a People’s Choice Award and EUR 2,000 will be granted to the artist with the most votes accumulated on the project’s Facebook page.
Coupled with the Kyiv Sculpture Project were pieces by internationally respected artists presented in the Special Project Exhibition. Artist Sui Jianguo from China explained the meaning behind his piece of three hallow jackets: “I was inspired to make the Legacy Mantle based on Chairman Mao’s iconic jacket in 1996. This was a means to express my feelings about the changes in my country. Since the cultural revolution in 1996 to this current movement of capitalism, the legacy of Chairman Mao is still felt today, but the promises of his era are empty, as symbolized by this hollow jacket.”
In addition, the exhibition features education programs, lectures by the leading art professionals, master classes, and guided tours as well as meetings with the artists. The aim of these activities is to provide a means to enable public access to internationally professional expertise in sculpting and contemporary art. The event is offered in two parts: professional and public, as it is designed for different audiences including artists and art professionals, general public and younger visitors, and ultimately for all to enjoy.
“I am absolutely thrilled to see everyone touching and examining this great collection of sculptures. Art should be touched and connected with. Every artist participating in this exhibition is also thrilled to see that everyone is enjoying their hard work. That is the ultimate achievement,” concluded Dr. Pheby. According to several event attendees the Kyiv Sculpture Project may become a prime example of culture as an effective tool for the area’s regeneration.