Less than a month after Putin's troops annexed Crimea in a show of AK-47 rifle-waving force, artists across the world have rallied to oppose Russian military aggression. A new online initiative, Artists Support Ukraine, aims to draw attention to the worsening situation and has put out an open call for artists and creatives to submit work to "make a statement in order to promote peace and freedom" in Crimea.
The campaign is the brainchild of three Ukrainian curators: Vladimir Kadygrob and Kateryna Taylor, who founded the acclaimed Kadygrob_Taylor Platform for Contemporary Art in Kiev, and Lesya Prokopenko, the platform's programme director.
They told us that it's not just the invasion that worries them: Putin has launched a concerted media campaign to smear the Ukrainian uprising and the new government as neo-Nazis and fascists, thereby lending legitimacy to his military intervention.
"Ideologically backed military intrusion is by no means a way to communicate in the civilised world," they say. "This is a simulated media fiction. That's why it is so important to speak from an international artistic community, which has always been a perfect model for diversity."
Anyone can submit artwork or use the hashtag #supportukraine to back the campaign. So far, artists like Bulgaria's Luchezar Boyadjiev, Fred Tomaselli from the US, Artur Zmijewski from Poland, and Russian art collective AES+F have all lent their voices to the initiative.
You can see some of the artwork submitted in the gallery above, as well as read extracts from statements sent in by the artists themselves. Interested in submitting your work for a good cause? You can enter here.
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