UCLA/Getty Interdepartmental Program in the Conservation of Cultural Heritage in co-sponsorship with UCLA Center for European and Russian Studies, and UCLA Social Sciences invite you to watch the recording of UCLA/Getty Program's Distinguished Speaker Series featuring Ihor Poshyvailo, Director of National Memorial to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum (Maidan Museum). The lecture titled Identity War in Ukraine: The Power of Cultural Resistance took place on April 7, 2023 and focused on the full-scale attack of Russia on Ukrainian heritage and on the cultural resistance in times of war.
Main topics covered: EuroMaidan Revolution, war, attack on heritage, damage and losses, cultural response and art frontline, cultural emergency strategies, challenges. Context: almost a year ago Russian troops launched a massive missile attack on all sovereign territory of Ukraine and brutally crossed its border in tanks. Thus, how a full-scale Russian-Ukrainian war started.
Museums, libraries, archives and other cultural institutions responded to the threat in accordance with their capacities and military situation. The civilized world launched a "cultural lend-lease" for Ukraine, providing cultural institutions with packing and restoration materials, protective and emergency equipment, hard and cloud storages, humanitarian and financial assistance. Ukrainian museums, libraries, archives, scientific and art centers, getting such solidarity and help, began active rescue operations, assessing losses and risks, documenting crimes against culture. In a period of 11 months of the war, the Russians destroyed or damaged 1,189 cultural objects in Ukraine, according to records from the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine. Tens of thousands of artefacts were stolen from museum and private collections in the occupied regions. The looting of Ukrainian historical, cultural and artistic values, the purposeful destruction of museums, archives, libraries, theaters, cultural centers, monuments, and religious buildings is an intentionally planned military and ideological operation of the Kremlin regime. What should be done for complex processes of stabilization, early recovery and reconstruction of Ukrainian culture, an international tribunal against Russian military criminals, restitution of cultural values and promotion of Ukrainian culture worldwide? As well as for raising awareness of the experience of this war and measures to strengthen the stability of culture in times of crisis? These are the issues to discuss in the lecture.
Ihor Poshyvailo (Kyiv, Ukraine) ) is a general director of the National Memorial to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum (Maidan Museum). He is a cultural activist, ethnologist, museologist, cultural manager and art curator. Dr. Poshyvailo is former chairman of the Museum Council at the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture, a former Vice-Chair of the ICOM DRMC International Committee on Disaster Resilient Museums. He holds a PhD in History, and was a Fulbright Scholar at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage and an international fellow at the DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the Kennedy Center.
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