From Springtime of the Peoples to Springtime of the Classes?

On October 18, at 19:00 Visual Culture Research Center opens a debate dedicated to the protests of nowadays.

Street protest today is perhaps the only access path for the masses to democratic politics. However, in the countries most severely hit by the crisis demonstrations of thousands of people are being supressed with batons. In Ukraine so far protests are predominantly combated legally – through banning them in court decisions and restricting public gatherings in new bills. Visual Culture Research Center invites to discuss the variety of forms of protest action today, the possibilities and menaces the protesters are facing.

The debate is taking place in the framework of the exhibition Democracies by Artur Zmijewski, which consists of film series documenting various political actions around the globe.


Denys Horbach – journalist, Independent Workers Union activist

Volodymyr Ishchenko – sociologist (Centre for Society Research), lecturer at Sociology Department of NaUKMA

Andriy Ryepa – philosopher, translator


Inna Sovsun – political scientist (Centre for Society Research), lecturer at Political Science Department of NaUKMA


Zmijewski’s Democracies at Visual Culture Research Center

On October 8th 2012 a new exhibition season at Visual Culture Research Center will start with Artur Zmijewski’s Democracies. During his stay in Kyiv Zmijewski will also take part in a presentation of a new issue of Political Critique magazine (Ukrainian edition), published by Visual Culture Research Center. An exhibition will last until October 23.

Artur Zmijewski is an artist and curator, one of the leading representatives of current critical art. He participated in 51. Venice Biennale, Manifesta 5 and Documenta 12. In 2012, he curated the 7. Berlin Biennale (together with Joanna Warsza and Voina group). Zmijewski is an artistic editor of Political Critique magazine. In his work Zmijewski studies the current social antagonisms, problems of political representation and collective imaginaries.

Democracies is an ongoing film series that documents various political actions around the globe. Zmijewski’s camera becomes both witness and participant of protest actions, mourning demonstrations, civil unrests, sports celebrations, historical reconstructions etc. Zmijewski comments on his project: ‘I appreciate the politicization of public space. A demonstration that may last for just on hour is a moment, when people occupy the position of political subject, subvert the rules of parliamentary politics. They say: only direct politics exist. This is an incredible moment that should never end’ (In conversation with Oleksiy Radynski, Art Ukraine magazine, #3/2011).

During his stay in Kyiv Artur Zmijewski will also present his film Catastrophe that documents the reaction of Polish society towards the crash of Lech Kaczynski’s presidential plane in Russia on April 10, 2012.

Visual Culture Research Center (26 Kostiantynivska st, Zhovten Cinema)

This exhibition takes part within Culture of Transformation project, co-organized by Visual Culture Research Center and supported by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of Poland. Project partners: Polish Institute in Kyiv, Zhovten Cinema.


October 4-7, 2012

Mystetskyi Arsenal

12 Lavrska St.

Magazine Hall

Events by “Political Critique”, “Prostory”, “Commons”, Translators and Writers Union and Visual Culture Research Center at the II International Arsenal Book Festival

Common political space makes a special type of agora or a public platform for presentations, debates, meetings of intellectuals, artists, activists, translators, critics, theoreticians. The active quality of such platform will let the participants and anyone interested meet and work together creating an intellectual workroom as a form of political action.

October 4, Thursday

14:30-15:00. Women and language: a talk on the politics of using feminitive forms. Participants: Olena Synchak, Halyna Yarmanova. Moderator: Kateryna Mishchenko.

15:30-16:50.   Legal workshop for translators. With copyright law expert Serhiy Petrenko. Moderators: Maryna Aleksandrovych and Iryna Troskot.

17:00-18:20.   Enemy vs. alien: on racism in science and society. Presentation of magazines “Political Critique”, “Commons”, and the book “Greeks, Arabs, and Us”. Participants: Nina Potarska, Andriy Ryepa, Vasyl Cherepanyn. Moderator: Anastasia Riabchuk.

18:30-20:00.   Faith, politics, love: presentation of magazines “Political Critique” and “Prostory”. Participants: Kateryna Mishchenko, Andriy Ryepa, Vasyl Cherepanyn. Moderator: Yevgeniya Belorusets.

October 5, Friday

15:00-16:20.   Presentation of “Labour and the Labour Movement in Ukraine” project and screening of the film “Kherson Machine-Building Plant”. Participants: Vitaliy Atanasov and Anastasia Riabchuk.

16:30-17:30.   The arbitrariness of speech: a talk on translatability of the obscene and a reading of texts from the 5th issue of “Prostory” “Faith, Porn, Love”. Participants: Oleksandra Hryhorenko, Olesya Kamyshnykova, Serhiy Orzhekhovsky. Moderator: Iryna Sobchenko.

17:40-19:00.   Presentation of “Commons” magazine: new social critique in Ukraine. Participants: Volodymyr Ishchenko, Ihor Samokhin. Moderator: Anastasia Riabchuk.

October 6, Saturday

14:00-16:00.   Translating the alike: Ukrainian-Polish workshop. Moderator: Oleksandra Bratchuk.

16:30-17:30. Translating the alike: debate and reading. Participants: Bohdan Zadura, Aneta Kaminska, Halyna Kruk, Vasyl Lozynsky, Ostap Slyvynsky. Moderator: Oleksandra Bratchuk.

17:40-19:00. Eros and sport: presentation of the 4th issue of “Political Critique” and a special issue of “Prostory” “Eros 2012”. Participants: Lesya Kulchinska, Kateryna Mishchenko, Oleksiy Radynsky. Moderator: Vasyl Cherepanyn.

19:00-20:00.   “The pleasure of contemplation”: presentation of the Ukrainian edition of Franz Kafka’s collection of short stories “Contemplation”, styled as the primary edition of 1912. With Vasyl Lozynsky, author of idea and translator. Moderator: Andriy Ryepa.

October 7, Sunday

11:00-13:00.   Ukrainian-Polish translating workshops. Moderator: Oleksandra Bratchuk.

14:00-15:00.   Freedom, translation, solidarity: discussion about translation as a political strategy. With members of the Translators and Writers Union. Moderator: Kateryna Mishchenko.

16:00-18:00.   Forget fear: presentation of the 4th issue of “Political Critique” with the art director of the edition, chief curator of the 7th Berlin Biennale Artur Zmiewski. Participants: Lesya Kulchinska, Oleksiy Radynsky. Moderator: Vasyl Cherepanyn.

“Political Critique” is the Ukrainian edition of the magazine “Krytyka Polityczna”, the first international publishing project by the intellectual community of the same name, which emerged in Poland at the beginning of the 2000s.

“Prostory” is an independent platform on literature and art, which includes an online magazine, public cultural events and a printed periodical.

“Commons” is a collective project focused on analyzing social reality on a national and a global scale.

Translators and Writers Union is an initiative founded by translators of fiction and nonfiction literature and writers for protecting their rights and professional development.

Visual Culture Research Center is a platform for collaboration of artists, activists and researchers founded in Kyiv-Mohyla Academy in 2008. Since April 2012 VCRC resides at Zhovten cinema.

Special event by “PROSTORY”, “POLITICAL CRITIQUE”, “COMMONS” magazines and VISUAL CULTURE RESEARCH CENTER at 19th Lviv Editors’ Forum



Friday, 14.09.2012


Danylo Halytskyi National Medical University Library, 6, Sichovykh Striltsiv Str.

Presentation of the book «Greeks, Arabs, and Us. Research on Islamophobia in the Humanities» with the participation of translator Andriy Ryepa. Moderator: Vasyl Cherepanyn

Saturday, 15.09.2012


Dzyga, “Kvartyra 35” cafe, 35, Virmenska Str.

“Love and Politics”: presentation of magazines “Political Critique” and “Prostory”. Moderator: Kateryna Mishchenko


Café «Shtuka», 8, Kotlyarevska Str.

“Glory to the Enemies”: presentation of magazines “Political Critique” and “Commons” with the participation of Vasyl Cherepanyn and Nina Potarska. Moderator: Nelya Vakhovska

Performance “Traveling of Matołek the Billy-Goat” in Kyiv

Visual Culture Research Center (Kyiv) and Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle (Warsaw) present

July 30-31, 2012, Monday-Tuesday

Within the Special Project “Double Game” of the First Kyiv Biennale of Contemporary Art “ARSENALE 2012” the performance from the series “Travelings of Matołek the Billy-Goat” prepared by the Polish artist Paweł Althamer will take place in Kyiv urban space.


Presentation of the 5th issue of “Prostory” magazine

On Thursday, 26th of July at 7 p.m. the new issue of the magazine “Prostory” titled “Faith, Porn, Love” will be presented in the Visual Culture Research Center at “Zhovten” Cinema (26, Kostyantynivska St.). The editors of the issue Nelya Vakhovska, Kateryna Mishchenko and Nataliya Chermalykh will speak on political love, pornography in literature, social morality and faith in their own faith.

Faith, Porn, Love – isn’t just an issue that combines all the three components of the triad to make entire chapters with literature, philosophical and artistic works, starting from the Vienna Actionists’ prose, contemporary Ukrainian poetry and essays, to French philosophy and “indecent” Italian sonnets from the 16th century. The trinity itself signifies a new logic of thinking and action in the contemporary space without hope. According to this logic, love might solidarize, porno may expose the society’s underside, and faith can overturn the established oppressive order. Also “Faith, Porn, Love” is the slogan used by “Prostory” to oppose the existing reactionary politics of prohibitions and censorship, the fighters against gender and sexuality.

Four art projects at once are presented in the issue: works by French photographer Antoine d’Agata, Ukrainian photographers Yevgeniya Belorusets and Stepan Rudyk, and graphic works by Anatoliy Belov. Among the authors of the issue: classics and coevals from Ukraine, Italy, USA, France, Germany, Austria, Poland, Switzerland, such as Anastasia Afanasyeva, Leonid Ushkalov, Bohdan Storokha, Geneviève Fraisse, Theodor Adorno, Alain Badiou, Aldo Nove, Walter Benjamin, Hermann Nitsch, Roland Barthes, Rosa Luxemburg, Agota Kristof, Audre Lord, and many others.

“Prostory” is an independent literary and artistic platform engaged in publishing an online magazine, and printed periodical, as well as organizing public cultural events.


R.E.P. group, Visual Culture Research Center, Right to the City group

July, 11, 2012, Wednesday, 21:30

Video screening of works by R.E.P. group 2005-2012 with participation of Kseniya Hnylytska, Nikita Kadan, Zhanna Kadyrova, Lesia Khomenko

Present compilation includes video documentations of early actions by R.E.P group “Wе will R.E.P. you!”, “Smuggling”, the latest performances from “Mediators” series and two video works – “Superproposition” and “Ukrainian land”. The selection demonstrates the evolution of new engaged art as well as refers directly to the situation of Hostynyi Dvir in Kyiv by posing a question of resistance to aggressive privatization of public space and the role of art and culture in this struggle. Works by R.E.P group raise other social and political problems, which are open to discussion with the authors after the projection.

R.E.P. group ( was founded in 2004 during the Orange revolution. Since 2006 R.E.P. group includes: Kseniya Hnylytska, Nikita Kadan, Zhanna Kadyrova, Volodymyr Kuznetsov, Lesia Khomenko, Lada Nakonechna. The group creates installations, drawings, murals, videos, actions and performances.

“Wе will R.E.P. you!” (2005) R.E.P. artists intervened on the territory of collision of communist and nationalist manifestations. The artists presented themselves as an independent political organization. The action led to a conflict between artists and nationalists.

“Ukrainian land” (2010) is a short film showing romantic Ukrainian landscapes accompanied with pathetic music turns into advertisement of the land.

The action “Smuggling” (2007) took place on the checkpoint of the Ukrainian-Polish border. R.E.P. carried Russian petrol in rubber hot-water bottles under their clothes and Russian gas in balloons. The artists also filmed the everyday life of Ukrainian petty smugglers who bind cartons of cigarettes and rubber bottles with vodka to their bodies by sticky tape to carry it into Poland through the border.

Two short films “Superproposition” (2008) are made in the conventions of advertisement genre. The advert aims at potential Polish employers by praising the qualities of illegal Ukrainian workers (low price, absence of rights protection, absence of insurance).With support of F.A.I.T. Foundation, Krakow, Zacheta Narodowa Galeria Sztuki, Warsaw (Poland).

Performance “Yodler” (2011) is from the “Mediators” series. Mediators are the folk musicians who belong to different regional and national traditions of traveling singers (including Ukrainian Lirnyk, Armenian Ashug, Kazakh Akin, Polish Pesniar and others). Invited by REP group they are performing in their own way in the streets songs on topics related to contemporary art. In the Austrian city Schwaz Tyrolean Yodlers sing about numerous cases of censorship of contemporary art, trials against the artists and pogroms of the exhibitions.

Hostynyi Dvir (4, Kontraktova Square)

Exhibition by Miron Zownir «ОКРАЇНА / OKRAЇNA»

June, 29 – July, 27, 2012
Opening – June, 29, Friday, 19:00
Visual Culture Research Center (26 Kostyantynivska St., “Zhovten” Cinema)

Having visited his historical homeland Ukraine in summer 2011 famous German photographer Miron Zownir began to work on a new photo series. Exactly one year later, when attention of the whole Europe is focused on Ukraine and Poland, Zownir represents his newest photo-project from Kyiv, Lodz, Moscow and Warsaw called «Okraїna» in the Visual Culture Research Center. Life of urban outcasts in these cities has its own laws. The boundaries that define their everyday life, outlined by poverty and social exclusion, are not less firm and restrictive than the geographical ones. East-European space is characterized by unanimity determined by invisible, unwanted fringes – citizens of outskirts. «Okraїna» by Miron Zownir is an aesthetic paradigm. It combines dark expressionism, urban landscape and iconic images of outcasts of the 21century.

Miron Zownir is a photographer, filmmaker, author of criminal novels, professor at the Academy of Film and Television in Berlin. His photo-books are published in one of the best art-publishing houses Gestalten, his works are exhibited in the most influential galleries alongside such stars as Nobuyoshi Araki, Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Weegee, having influenced with their documentary value the whole generation of young artists. Zownir lived in Berlin, London, New York, Los Angeles, and managed to capture counterculture punk energy of the 1980-2000’s. Heroes of his uncompromising works are homeless, outsiders, intellectuals, the main themes – man lost in the modern city, loneliness, affect, fear, deviation, sexuality. As a filmmaker since 1986 Zownir created 10 short films, worked with directors such as Alexander Rockwell, Ryu Murakami and Chosei Funahara, as well as one full-length film that in 2003 participated in Berlin Film Festival program.

In June 2011 Visual Culture Research Center presented Zownir’s retrospective, which included photographs from 1980-2000’s, along with a series of short films. «Prostory» magazine published a selection of his photographs and texts.

Curators Anastasia Zhyvkova, Vasyl Cherepanyn

Opening hours: Tuesday Sunday, 12:00 21:00

Contacts: Anastasia Zhyvkova +38 093 477 72 72,; Vasyl Cherepanyn +38 050 445 76 08,

Within the project of the Visual Culture Research Center “IMAGE IN THE DARK: CONTEMPORARY CRITICAL PHOTOGRAPHY” in the frame of the Parallel Exhibition Program of the First Kyiv Biennale of Contemporary Art “ARSENALE 2012”

“I’d rather be a cyborg than a goddess”

Presentation of the Ukrainian translation of Cyborg Manifesto by Donna Haraway

June 21, 2012, Thursday, 18:30

Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology and Socialist Feminism in the Late 20th Century is an ironic utopia about love between humans, living organisms and machines. In the iconic text of the 1980s American biologist and philosopher Donna Haraway analyzes the impact of new technology on postcolonial power system and criticizes essentialist strategies in Western feminisms and socialisms. “I’d rather be a cyborg than a goddess”, – Haraway says, calling upon the politics of cyborg-feminism.

Short version of the Ukrainian translation is published in the Political Critique magazine #3, full text available in Gender in Isolation exhibition catalogue


Yevgenia Belorusets – artist, translator, editor of the Prostory magazine;

Oleksandr Ivashyna – culturologist, Kyiv-Mohyla Acadamy lecturer;

Nadia Parfan – author of the Ukrainian translation of Cyborg Manifesto, Feminist Ofenzyva activist;

Anatoliy Ulyanov – cyborg, transhumanist, curator of internet-project;

Anna Khvyl – culturologist, Feminist Ofenzyva activist.

Moderator – Yelyzaveta Babenko, culturologist, Feminist Ofenzyva activist.

Visual Culture Research Center, 26 Kostyantynivska St., “Zhovten” Cinema