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Photo: Kris Kulakovska, ukraine.ua/imagebank


Ukraine has already made a great contribution to world photo art. Like-minded artists who usually come from the same geographical area often gather in creative groups to develop their common visual language. Ideally this is then passed down to the next generation who embrace new features yet remain connected and consistent with the original unique identifiable brand. At the same time, many individual artists prefer to stand out in order to express themselves and their own unique ideas. Taken together they shape the powerful wave of contemporary Ukrainian photography and help to influence global trends.

In the early 1970’s, eight photographers from Kharkiv united to fight the Soviet aesthetic canon and formed an underground group of art photography. It led to the emergence of Kharkiv School of Photography with a diverse, but distinctive and recognizable visual language. A number of young emerging artists continue the traditions of KharkivSchool of photography today using its aesthetics as a ground in their artistic research.Visit the catalogue of Kharkiv School of Photography, published by VASA, to experience the aesthetic for yourself.

The Kharkiv School ‘second generation’ photographers Misha Pedan and Roman Pyatkovka founded in 2010 the Ukrainian Photographic Alternative to support development of contemporary Ukrainian photography.

Borys Mikhailov‘s works are part of permanent exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum (New York), Tate Modern (London), Russian Museum (St. Petersburg), Japanese National Museum of Art (Osaka), as well as in the numerous private collections.  

Sergey Melnitchenko has a large collection of works including more than twenty independent projects. His photography is atypical and expressive. His works are presented in galleries of London, Hong Kong and various world art fairs, as it appeared at the VOLTA Art Fair in Basel.   

Starting as a photojournalist, Maxim Dondyuk immersed viewers in the social and historical reality of his country. Later, he moved away from classical documentary narrative form and rather plunged into emotions, reflection. Maxim has been widely awarded and nominated for numerous international competitions. His works have been exhibited in Paris, London, Rome, Geneva, Colombia.   

Synchrodogs group is an artist duo by two Ukrainian photographers Tania Shcheglova and Roman Noven. Their work explores the everlasting tension between man and nature. They took part in numerous group exhibitions in galleries and museums throughout the world and published their artworks in magazines like Esquire, Vice, Vogue, Süddeutsche Zeitung, British Journal of Photography, Vogue, Zeit Campus, and others.

Photo Kyiv Fair unites Ukrainian and European galleries, cultural institutions, philanthropists, publishers and thousands of admirers of contemporary photography art to share their love of photography. The program includes a large educational program, special exhibition photo projects and a publishing section.  

Kyiv Art Week is an international art festival. It offers Ukrainian galleries an opportunity to showcase their collections and collaborations, while Kyivans and guests of the city get the chance to immerse themselves in art for a few days.

Video: Kyiv Art Week

Odesa Photo Days is an international festival, one of the most interesting photo initiatives outside Kyiv whose influence is reaching across the borders with co-production, educational or presentation events in Georgia, Austria and other countries.

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