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Skarbnytsya – Linking two nations through art

Skarbnytsya’s upcoming exhibition spotlights Ukrainian craft and Celtic mythology to explore the themes of passage and voyage. Since the implementation of the Homes For Ukraine Scheme in March of 2022, upwards of 25,000 Ukrainians have found refuge in Scotland. The exhibition seeks to demonstrate this palpable connection between the two nations through art. 

Composed of an interdisciplinary mix of graduates and current art students from The Glasgow School of Art, the Skarbnytsya team began by selling art sourced from students, tutors and local artists at their Student Union to fund aid for Ukraine in early 2022. This initial sale lit a spark of further things to come.

Evolving into an exhibition and print sale group, it has since taken to displaying Ukrainian and Scottish work alongside each other to define new creative bridges between themselves, the public and relocated Ukrainian people currently seeking refugee in Glasgow. 

Behind the name

Skarbnytsya‘s 2nd Sale, Outlier, Glasgow, March 2023

Skarbnytsya is the Ukrainian word for a treasure box: the name is meant to symbolise the beauty of objects with a childish curiosity and appreciation.

Their upcoming exhibition aims to make visible ‘invisible webs between these two cultures’ through different and parallel visual languages. 

The Celtic symbol of the labyrinth is the crest of arms for this exhibition; the space will subsequently be laid out as one. Playful and inquisitive, it hopes to coax viewers to explore the environment. The body of the show exhibits its craft and folk initiatives. Each kind of process is a journey within itself; intricacy and character slowly and scrupulously marked into each weaving, tapestry, pottery, painting, and textile.

Art as protest

As put by co-founders Ewelinka Dochan and Mary Lydon, members’ personal ties to Ukraine fuel their passion and understanding for the need to promote the work of young Ukrainian artists. Subsequently, the group creates a space to allow Ukrainian artists to showcase their creative endeavours during a time of war; which in itself is an act of protest.

‘We recognise the responsibility we must take in promoting awareness of the scale of the tragedy in this time of war.’

The group insist this is a way of protecting slavic artwork that is under threat as well as continuing the conversation of equality that each human has the right to.

Skarbnytsya’s exhibition will be at Glasgow’s The House Arts Collective on the 14th of June.

Photo Credits: Skarbnytsya

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