Kateryna Lysovenko: Paint Anyway

A mural for the Kunsthaus Graz


Venue: Foyer

Shameless earth does not remain dead for too long.

It's outrageous how trees regenerate and turn green after being carpet bombed.

Lost people live in cities called dead, they are searching for water and food, they die during the search.

In poetry, in religious texts, when a great evil occurs the sky darkens, the sun does not rise, the birds fall silent, but on this side of the texts there is no evil after which the sun would not rise, and there is no such evil in which the surviving people are not doomed to live.

So far, even the most difficult conditions in the world could not be called untenable for life. Since people can change the conditions of life for themselves and those around them, they have no right to call the land or cities dead. By calling something dead, you relieve yourself of the responsibility for what happens in the ‘dead’ zone.

Since people can change the conditions of life for themselves and those around them, one cannot evade responsibility for what conditions are created in certain places. After all, you can live in a very, very different way, to the point where that living is almost complete indistinguishable from death
. - Kateryna Lysovenko 

Foto: Kunsthaus Graz
Shameless earth does not remain dead for too long (RU) Expand Box

Бесстыжая земля не остаётся мертвой слишком долго.

Возмутительно, как деревья восстанавливаться и зеленеют после ковровых бомбардировок.

В городах, названным мертвыми, живут утраченные люди, они ищут воду и еду, гибнут  во время поисков. 

В поэзии, религиозных текстах небо темнеет, когда происходит большое зло, солнце не встаёт, птицы умолкают, но по эту сторону текстов нет такого зла, после которого солнце не встанет, и нет такого зла, при котором уцелевшие люди не обрекаются на жизнь.

Пока что даже самые тяжёлые условия в мире нельзя назвать невозможными для жизни. Раз люди могут изменять условия жизни для себя и окружающих, они не имеют права называть землю или города мертвыми, назвав что-то мертвым, снимаешь с себя ответственность за то, что происходит в "мертвой" зоне. 

Раз люди могут менять условия жизни для себя и окружающих, нельзя отказаться от ответственности за то, какие условия созданы в тех или иных местах. Жить ведь можно очень, очень по разному, до почти полной неразличимости со смертью. - Kateryna Lysovenko

About the project Expand Box

In continuation of her participation in the steirischer herbst prologue at the Neue Galerie, Kateryna Lysovenko will be painting a mural for the ground floor of the Kunsthaus Graz for two days. In the foyer of the institution, the Ukrainian painter and performer plans to let the public participate in her work in a semi-public space. 

Lysovenko's artistic language developed from the heritage of the socialist-realist painting tradition, which she transformed into a form of activist painting in the changing political and social environment of the 2000s. In her practice, she turns to research on power and ideology as well as her own struggle to break away from the Soviet Union.
Even before the war, Lysovenko was concerned with the image of sacrifice and oppression. In her painting and performances, she resists the norms of the art academy, works repeatedly and subversively in public space against religious and political propaganda, but also against the suppression of otherness in the everyday life of a state struggling for freedom of expression, autonomy and independence. 

Since her escape and arrival in Graz, Lysovenko has continued to work on painterly realisations of her ongoing preoccupation with Ukrainian reality. In solidarity with the victims, suffering with the bereaved and in opposition to the brutal grimace of war, her works - which she also offers on social media as a platform for discussion - create both philosophical and empathetic commentaries on the prevailing political entanglements and their resulting human fates. 

Kateryna Lysovenko Expand Box

Kateryna Lysovenko was born in Kiev on 26 October 1989. She received a classical art education at the M.B. Grekova Odessa Art College, then studied at NAOMA and simultaneously completed the "Contemporary Art" course at KAMA. She has recently exhibited at the Memorial Museum "Territory of Terror", Lviv, as well as at Voloshyn Gallery, Kyiv, Tiro al Blanco Gallery, Guadalajara as part of the exhibition Transcending Boundaries, 2021, and BWA Gallery, Zielona Góra, where she was also artist-in-residence in 2022. Her actions refer to the ideological shifts after the collapse of the USSR. At the outbreak of the war, she was one of the women who left the country with their children at the end of March, leaving their partners, parents and friends behind with heavy hearts.




Do 08.09.


Artist Talk with Kateryna Lysovenko

Event, Artist's Talk> Kunsthaus Graz

Event, Artist's Talk

> Kunsthaus Graz

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24th/25th December 2023