June 29, 2022

Last Day to View ‘Art Under Siege’ at Lyme Academy is Sunday, Sales Benefit Ukrainian Charities

‘Girl with a white scarf’ is one of the featured paintings in the Ukrainian fundraising art show currently on view at Lyme Academy of Fine Arts.

Gallery Hours for Show are Wednesday through Sunday, June 15-19, from 12 to 4 p.m.

OLD LYME — Art Under Siege is currently on view at Lyme Academy of Fine Arts in the historic Sill House on the Academy’s campus on Lyme St. The exhibition is presented by Old Lyme resident, Barbara Shriver and will continue through June 19, 2022. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, June 8-12 and June 15-19, from 12 to 4 p.m.

The unique collection of Ukrainian art spans the period from 1945 – 2001, featuring more than 50 pieces collected by Barbara during the time she and her husband, Dick, lived in Ukraine.

A Gallery Opening was held Sunday, June 5, at the Sill House Gallery, and raised an initial $10,000 towards the fundraising efforts to benefit Ukrainian charities.

This coming Sunday, June 12, the Yevshan Ukrainian Vocal Ensemble of CT will perform at the Sill House at 1 pm.  This chorus will sing traditional songs of Ukraine along with the country’s national anthem. All are welcome.

The Lyme Academy of Fine Arts has donated the gallery space, their share of the proceeds of the sale of the artwork along with the installation of this special exhibit.

Paintings for sale range from $300 to $5,000 and memorabilia ranges from $5 to $100. 

The Shrivers lived and worked in Ukraine from the last days of the Soviet Union and then the 10 years following Ukraine’s independence from 1990 – 2001.

A significant portion of the artwork was acquired from a portfolio of art from 1945 – 1990, with portraits and scenes from Crimea to Kyiv and the countryside in between.

Traditional Ukrainian pottery is featured in the show/fundraiser at Lyme Academy.

Unless they embraced the prescribed rules for official Soviet art, dissident artists were persecuted and harassed in various ways, including being prevented from purchasing essential materials such as paints and canvases.

Most of the artists, whose work is being exhibited, were trained at the Kyiv Art Institute.  They were not allowed to travel outside Ukraine but were very much aware of the vast art world outside of Ukraine.

Artists highlighted in the exhibition include Victor Zaretsky, a remarkable figure of Ukrainian Socialist Realism and Soviet Nonconformist Art, who was influenced by Gustav Klimt. Works of art by L’viv’s Miskevich, known as the self-styled “Andy Warhol of Ukraine,” are also featured.

‘The Mourness’ by Yuri Charnovsky is one of the featured pieces of artwork from the show.

Included in the significant collection are unique woodworking pieces, painted eggs, fabrics and handmade jewelry.

According to Barbara, “To me, much of this art reflects the impact of the form of government on how artists paint.  Those paintings made under Soviet tyranny are quite different from paintings produced in an independent Ukraine.”

The ‘Art Under Siege’ exhibition can be viewed in the Sill House Gallery, June 8 – 19, (Wednesday – Sunday) from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Two-thirds of the proceeds from sale of artwork will be contributed to Ukrainian charities including the Ukrainian Catholic University (based in L’viv, Ukraine) and its program for refugees from the war.

Another recipient charity will be the Boyarsky Orphanage of 88 small children that was forced to flee the Kyiv region earlier this year, and relocated to Utsk, Poland.

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