Research Grant for Ukrainian Lens-based Artists and Researchers
Vic Bakin (1984)
"Last year I started a still-untitled and ongoing project about the Ukrainian queer scene. Working with youth portraiture in general and being queer myself I am very engaged in the queer scene specifically. Here, after years of forbiddance and reppression, the queer scene begins to sprout from the underground, little by little gains its own unique voice, different from others. I personally feel obliged to give this voice a visual form."
Yana Kononova (1977)
"Since the end of March 2022, I have been working on an artistic study of the war. I take pictures on my medium format film camera of what has been happening in Ukraine since the beginning of the war with the Russian Federation. I move to areas that have been occupied or territories where hostilities have taken place. My focus is on traces of war crimes, destroyed civilian infrastructure, objects of the militaristic imagination of the invaders."
Nazar Furyk (1995)
"In my photographic practice before the full scale invasion I captured, or more often, arranged everyday still lives and landscapes, combining artificial objects with elements of the natural environment. Most of all, I really appreciated the deliberate and precise chaos of nature when emphasizing the surrealist and fragile nature of the landscape with its strange power.
Now I try to go through the 'chaos', I try to capture people with big hopes for the life ahead, people with a powerful belief in freedom, faith, and courage, and to show all these fragilities in the photos."
Viacheslav Poliakov (1986)
"I'm constantly trying to capture and share the unique aesthetic of my immediate environment. I record a combination of natural forms and human impact. Wild vegetation and signs of natural decay on the old walls, bleached by the southern sun of Kherson. Rusty metal fences and organic waste used as fertilisers in the backyards of Lviv. Graffiti layers on the gray soviet lime bricks. Old pain, re-captured and healed by nature.
With the full scale invasion of Russia, under the influence of images of torn apart bodies in the news feeds, I’ve started to tear apart the pictures I had. Mixing the records of old pain, almost vanished in time, with the new pain, live and growing."
Elena Subach (1980)
"My goal is to portray and record oral stories of people who were forced to leave their homes because of the war. I ask about the experience of abandoning everything and going into the unknown, about the conditions those people live in now. The photos you can see here were taken in Lviv shelters for internally displaced persons. Theaters, schools, libraries, kindergartens, and offices have been converted into shelters."
One guy from Mariupol said, "In order to be able to evacuate from there, you had to become a different person—half-empty and semi-new. Otherwise, you had no chance to leave the city. You become a person with no past as it has been taken away, a person whose memories have no material basis. There is nothing you are left with, not even the graves of your parents."
Researcher of contemporary Ukrainian photography, journalist and editor based in Kyiv. Ahmed co-edited the UPHA Made in Ukraine anthology of Ukrainian photography, published by BOOKSHA in 2021, and was a senior editor of the Your Art media platform, dedicated to contemporary visual art in Ukraine. She is a co-curator of the artist-run-space Hlebzawod (Kyiv).
Young American is about the hope of youth, the power of youth, and about the connection between people—the profound humanness we all share. It reflects my vision, as an immigrant, of the freedom and identity of an “America” still rife with dreams and possibilities. It is my visualization of America that validates a sense of self not in terms of some idealized standard of gender, sexuality, or beauty, but as who we each are as unique individuals.
We asked: What are the most meaningful ways to support the Ukrainian photographic community?
Scholarships that allow us to continue our work and give the world a more in-depth perspective on the situation in Ukraine.
Push your cultural institutions to understand their colonial approach to all ex-members of the Russian empire.
Ensure artists' visibility and active participation in the international photographic context, assist them in building new cultural networks and in maintaining existing ones.