An exhibition on Ukrainian modernism, ‘In the Eye of the Storm,’ is now on display at the Austrian Belvedere


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In Vienna, Österreichische Galerie Belvedere (“the Belvedere”) is currently showcasing an exhibition titled “In the Eye of the Storm: Modernism in Ukraine,” based on a similarly-titled book by art historians Konstantin Akinsha, Katia Denysova and Olena Kashuba-Volvach.

The museum announced that the exhibition will run from February 23 – June 2, 2024. The book “In the Eye of the Storm: Modernism in Ukraine, 1900 – 1930s,” which includes 180 photographs, was released by the British-American publisher Thames & Hudson in November 2022.


“The book presents innovative art created in Ukraine at the beginning of the 20th century, focusing on three key cultural centers  — Kyiv, Kharkiv and Odesa,” reads the book description. “Several art movements emerged amid complicated social-political events such as the collapse of empires, World War I, the Revolutions of 1917 following the Ukrainian War for Independence and the establishment of Soviet Ukraine. At the same time, immigrants like Sonia Delone and Oleksandr Arkhypenko gained recognition far away from their homeland, the followers of Mykhailo Boychuk focused on Byzantine Renaissance and Kultur Lige artists strived to help the development of the modern Yiddish culture.”




Translator and literary critic Marta Gosovska told Chytomo that the exhibition is traveling across Europe. In addition to the Belvedere, it has visited the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Spain and will be showcased in London.


According to Gosovska, “In the Eye of the Storm” replicates the plurality of art styles and cultural identities in Ukraine at the beginning of the 20th century. The exhibition tells about Ukrainian modernist artists and their attempts to create a recognizable national style as part of the struggle for Ukrainian sovereignty and cultural autonomy.


 “[The] modernist movement in Ukraine was unfolding in the middle of complicated social-political events of the collapse of empires, World War I, the Revolutions of 1917 with a temporarily gained Ukrainian National Republic independence (1917-20) and the further establishment of Soviet Ukraine,” said Gosovska.


Despite such political shock, it was a period of the true flourishing of Ukrainian art, literature, theater and film,” she added. “In fact, Ukrainian modernism has so many stunning stories that [there] will be plenty for more than one bestseller and more than one film!


In addition to “In the Eye of the Storm: Modernism in Ukraine, 1900 – 1930s,” Thames & Hudson has released “The Art of Ukraine by Alisa Lozhkina and the multi-author book “Treasures of Ukraine: A Nation’s Cultural Heritage.”


Thames & Hudson is one of the world’s leading publishers of illustrated books, with over 2,000 titles in print. They publish books across ‎all areas of visual creativity: the arts (fine, applied, decorative, performing), architecture, design, photography, fashion, film, music, archaeology, history, and popular culture. Thames & Hudson headquarters are located in London. The company has a sister company in New York and subsidiary sales and distribution companies in Hong Kong and Paris.


Copy editing: Joy Tataryn, Terra Friedman King