Yuliya works with ink and calligraphy pen, influenced by her early years in Japan. The center of her painting is a woman. She explores “HER”. How understanding and embracing female sexuality can influence “HER” life, how it reflects on success and power relations within society, benefits her mentally, physically and socially.
Through studying and redefining female sexuality, Yuliya began to shape a practical philosophy – Femmania, which is the central theme of her art: What it really means, to be “HER” in a post-feminist, oversexed, yet asexual world.
It’s 2014 and I’m back in Ukraine for the summer first time in years. This is not a holiday for me, I’m not here to enjoying the careless months of haze and fun. I’m here because 3 months prior, Russia invaded Crimea and Donbas. Because I saw students and civilians killed during peaceful protest in Kiev, on live cameras from London, and I just knew, that now is the time to go HOME.
So my life changing summer has begun. My mum donating blood and putting together donations for refuges, my dad joins the first volunteer based unit and I’m collecting money for bullet proof vests for the men, women and boys, sorting mountains of clothes, toiletries, kids toys for refugees arriving daily from Donetsk and Luhansk to my city, and at night I am painting to keep sane.
My paintings are much darker than my first collection, it has the depth one can only understand knowing the turbulence of the time, the WAR has started, but the world is hush-hush about it, yet you see wounded at the hospitals, as my mum keeps donating her blood and, dad gone for months, and stream of women and kids escaping death, being pulled out from under the shots by brave volunteers that drive from my city to save them.
I mix my inks and raw emotion comes out, through dark and light tone on tone, as the uncertainty and fear sets in, yet, hope keeps shining through the gold. I paint my heart as line after line pours out of me in wiggly manner I think of peaceful happy times, I feel every smile, every heart beat, I’m hopeful. I call is “Halcyon Heart”. It’s cathartic. This painting will travel to London with me and will become a part of my life through various art shows, private collections on loan and finally find its rightful place at the art auction in aid for Ukraine. What a life it lived. What a journey it has been through.
When I’ve been approached by ART AID UKRAINE I couldn’t think of a better peace to donate. I do hope it will find forever home with a person of kindest heart as by purchasing this art peace that ONE human will be saving lives through beauty and hope. I do hope those new kind hands will know this story and feel that sense of hope, peace, serenity and love. From my heart to yours 🖤
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