First International Biennale of Contemporary Art in Ukraine 2012 Announced, and Curator Appointed

Sep 20, 2011, 08:00 ET from Arsenale 2012

KYIV, Ukraine, September 20, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --


17th May - 30th July 2012


Mystetskyi Arsenal

Kyiv, Ukraine

The Inaugural International Biennale of Contemporary Art in the Ukraine, 'ARSENALE' will open in Kyiv on 17th May 2012, at the National Culture and Art Museum Complex 'Mystetskyi Arsenal.'

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It has been organised through a collaboration of the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine, the Kyiv City State Administration, the State Directory for Affairs, and the 'Mystetskyi Arsenal.'

Mykhailo Kulyniak, Minister of Culture said: "Ukraine has been waiting for such a powerful cultural initiative as the first Kyiv Biennale for a long time. I believe that this innovative project will certify new benchmarks in the state cultural politics. Due to the first Kyiv Biennale, Ukraine will present its new image to the international art community - an image of the country for the 21st Century."

A further objective for the Biennale is to help to stimulate the development of Kyiv's tourism infrastructure, while simultaneously strengthening the status of Kyiv as an international dynamic cultural centre.

The organisers of 'ARSENALE' also unveiled the appointment of eminent curator David Elliot as Artistic Director. Elliot most significantly curated the 17th Sydney Biennale, The Beauty of Distance. He was also the founding Director of the Mori Art Museum in Tokoyo, Director of Moderna Museet in Stockholm, and was the first Director of the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art.

David Elliot:Curator of Arsenale, said"In my opinion, the international art community's perception of Ukraine as a former Soviet country has exhausted itself. Therefore it is a big challenge for me to become a curator of Ukrainian Biennale, to open not only a new unique space of Mystetskyi Arsenal to the world, but also offer a new vision of the country and its art, which can be quite valuable for the development of the global artistic context."

The First International Biennale Exhibition, 'The Best of Times, The Worst of Times, Rebirth and Apocalypse in Contemporary Art,' takes as its central theme the cyclical nature of contemporary art and explores how it relates both to our lives today, and to our continually changing perspectives of the past and the future.

This world-class event will bring together contemporary art from all over the world, including Ukraine and the CIS States.

This will be the first in a series of Biennale exhibitions to be held in Mystetskyi Arsenal. Out of the numerous Biennale events worldwide, the Kyiv's Biennale will be one of the few, organised around a permanent home.

This major new art complex, in the centre of the city, is set to establish Kyiv as one of the leading art and cultural venues in Europe. It has been created from a former historic garrison, and later military arsenal, built in the late 18th Century.

Nataliia Zabolotna, Director of Mystetskyi Arsenal said: "Mystetskyi Arsenal is an ambitious project to establish new standards in the cultural life of Ukraine, with outstanding exhibitions that will win international renown. Art has the power to inspire and build bridges, and our goal is to bring Ukraine's artistic and cultural heritage onto the world stage."

   Commissar of ARSENALE:          Nataliia Zabolotna (Ukraine)
   Curator of ARSENALE:            David Elliot (Great Britan/Germany)
   Curator of the Special Program: Olexandr Soloviov (Ukraine)
   Curator of the Theoretical      Ekaterina Degot (Russia)
   PARALLEL PROGRAM    'ARSENALE' will present a parallel program in a
     variety of cultural institutions, and public spaces of Kyiv.


Mystetskyi Arsenal website:

For more information and images contact:
Samyra Rashid 
t: +44(0)20-3178-5693


SOURCE Arsenale 2012