Performance “Slovom”

On March 7, 2019, a performance titled “Slovom” was held within the framework of the exhibition “A Century of Ukrainian Abstraction” at Taras Shevchenko National Museum which included the installation “rozdIlovI”. The author, Olia Mykhailiuk, relates these two works, as in both she studies signs, intervals, and rhythms in poetry in her own way, focusing on their visual manifestation, interaction, and absence.

Since the exhibition is held at Shevchenko Museum, we have naturally immersed into the context of his works. I noticed certain word combinations in his “Testament” and three dots occurring two times, reflecting some nervousness, fervor and unuttered nature of the verse. Then I read in his biography that Shevchenko wrote it when he was ill with bilateral pneumonia, a disease from which people rarely recovered in those days. He was certain that he was dying and wrote a testament to his nation. He then lived for 16 more years. During the performance, I felt what I call material resistance — the pen went hard, the paper ripped apart… But exactly that sudden rupture became what is now interesting to work with. A lighthouse with black light. Therefore, a new object will soon be added to our installation, and the project “rozdIlovI” will offer an opportunity to work with new texts.
Olia Mykhailiuk