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Photo exhibition and documentary performance: a artistic project about Mariupol was presented in New York

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Photo exhibition and documentary performance: a artistic project about Mariupol was presented in New York

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Photos by Anastasia Krasheninnikova

 

Until March 24th, an exhibition titled "Mariupol" will be held in New York – a multimedia project dedicated to the temporarily occupied city, aimed at reminding the American audience about the war crimes committed by Russians.

The "Mariupol" project consists of two parts:

1. An exhibition of photographs by Yevhen Maloletka and Mstyslav Chernov

Photographer Yevhen Maloletka, along with video journalist Mstyslav Chernov and producer Vasilisa Stepanenko, were the only representatives of international media who worked in Mariupol for over two weeks under Russian occupation.

The team documented the destruction, the work of medical professionals in hospitals, and the victims among the civilian population. The most resonant footage was captured on March 9th near the destroyed maternity hospital due to Russian shelling.

These and other materials formed the basis for the film "20 Days in Mariupol," which earned Ukraine its first Oscar in history.

 

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2. The documentary theatrical performance "Mariupol: Diary of War and the Tree of Life" was created by the organization Howl Arts and the artistic group Yara Arts Group.

Its plot is based on the stories of four Ukrainians who found themselves in Mariupol at the beginning of the invasion:

  • Yaroslav Semenenko — a member of the Ukrainian Paralympic swimming team;
  • Yevheniya Ivanchenko — a captain of the Mariupol police;
  • Olena Nikulina — the wife of an Azov Battalion soldier, Maxym Nikulin, who is currently in Russian captivity;
  • Valeriya Mykhailovska, who was working in the Czech Republic on February 24, 2022, and decided to return home to Mariupol to save her mother.

The performance combines documentary materials from activist Daria Kolomiets' project "Diary of War," poetry, songs, and choreography.

 

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A separate line of the performance is the mosaic panel "Tree of Life" by Alla Horska, created in Mariupol in 1967 together with Viktor Zaretsky, Halyna Zubchenko, Borys Plaksiy, Hryhoriy Pryshyedko, Vasyl Prakhnin, and Nadiya Svitlychna.

After the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine began, the panel was destroyed by Russian shelling.

 

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The project was directed by Virlyana Tkach, an American artist of Ukrainian descent. The performance featured poetry by Serhiy Zhadan, translated by Virlyana and Vanda Fips. Julian Kytasty worked on the music, Tom Lee created the decorations, and Waldemar Klyuzko developed the visual concept and graphics.

Also, Alla Horska herself will appear on stage, portrayed by Daria Kolomiets.

"At the end of the performance, all actors come out on stage and tell whose diaries each of them reads. This comes as a shock to the audience because the story on stage ends in the spring of 2022. It brings the audience back to reality, reminding them that this is primarily documentary material and that the events described are still ongoing," says Kolomiets.

The "Mariupol" exhibition will run until March 24, from Wednesday to Sunday, from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM, at Howl, located at 6 East 1st Street in Manhattan.

The performance "Mariupol: Diary of War and the Tree of Life" can be seen in the same venue from March 22 to 24 at 6:00 PM.

 

The Odessa Journal
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