Research Grant for Ukrainian Lens-based Artists and Researchers


Vic Bakin (1984)

photographer/visual artist

"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)

photographer/visual artist/researcher

"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)

photographer/visual artist

"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."

Amina Ahmed


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).

Piotr Pietrus

'When I was a child, I often traveled to the old past in my dreams, to those days, that are gone for good, thus impossible to experience. All that was left was to imagine. As a photographer, I became interested in looking for peculiar wormholes, the parallel worlds, societies, where time and history seemed to be frozen. From this point of view, I explore local territories and find it exciting when the past, fairy tales or myths suddenly come up through the surface of well-known reality.'

About the artist

Fyodor Telkov was born in 1986 in Nizhniy Tagil, Russia, and is now based in Yekaterinburg. He became a member of the Union of Photo Artists of Russia in 2010. Since then he has participated in solo and group exhibitions in China, Malaysia, Spain, Germany, USA and Russia. He has also published the photobooks '36 Views' and 'Alania. Testament. Blood of the Narts'.

Piotr Pietrus

Q. How does ‘Cicha Woda’ speak of the context in which it was created?

A. ‘Cicha Woda’ has naturally evolved through assembling images that speak to me in a certain mode. I am looking for the poetic in everyday situations, such as an apple tree at night covered with a green net to protect its fruit from the birds. An exhausted friend eating ice cream. Or watching my son playing at the shores of a lake during a short travel stop. The context is wide and the editing brings these moments together in order to create its own narrative, its own melody.

Q. How is this project a continuation of your previous work?

A. Alongside my project work I have always been collecting images. Cicha Woda is an edit out of these growing archives. In this way, Cicha Woda is always ongoing, taking twists and turns, going in different directions, silently floating alongside my daily life. The name only reflects a fragment of this river.


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.

- Nazar Furyk

Push your cultural institutions to understand their colonial approach to all ex-members of the Russian empire.

- Viacheslav Poliakov

Ensure artists' visibility and active participation in the international photographic context, assist them in building new cultural networks and in maintaining existing ones.

- Viktoria Bavykina