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Collectors' Bounty: Selections of Paintings and Drawings from the Fine Arts Collection of The Ukrainian Museum exhibition is currently being shown at the Museum, offering a rich palette of art works of some of the most important, best known, admired and beloved Ukrainian artists. The exhibition was developed from paintings and drawings that were recently donated to the Museum from the collections of Dr. Wolodymyr Pushkar, and the Estate of Bohdan and Oksana Rak. The exhibit is scheduled to close on September 26, 1999.

Eleven artists are represented here: Mykola Azovsky (1903-1947), Mykola Butovych (1895-1961), Oleksa Hryshchenko (1883-1977), Liuboslav Hutsaliuk (1923), Fedir Konovaliuk (1890), Borys Kriukov (1895-1967), Mykhailo Moroz (1904-1992), Oleksa Novakivksy (1872-1935), Myroslav Radysh (1910-1956), Ivan Trush (1869-1941) and Ivan Izhakevych (1864-1962).

The time frame encompassed by this exhibition is the second half of the 19th century to the present time. The thirty-two paintings exhibited, reflect the prevalent styles which dominated certain periods of that time span, such as impressionism and expressionism.

The artists were born in different parts of Ukraine and are of various generations. Although they were all nurtured and sustained by their common cultural heritage that is so strongly evident in the works of several of these artists, the creative output of each is mostly a reflection of that individual's specific journey to find artistic fulfillment.

This exhibition is part of a series of exhibitions entitled "In Celebration of Private Collectors." Through these the Museum would like to acknowledge the important role private collectors have played in the formation of significant collections, which they in turn shared with the general public, whether through loans for special exhibitions or outright gifts to cultural institutions. It is mostly through the generosity of several such private collectors that the Museum has been able to build its Fine Art Collection.

Flute Player
Ivan Izhakevych (1864-1962)
Flute Player
oil on canvas
Fine Arts Collection of The Ukrainian Museum
Gift of Dr. Volodymyr Pushkar in memory of his wife Stefania

Dr. Wolodymyr Pushkar has donated several of the paintings on the exhibit to the Museum in memory of his wife, Stefania. Among them are several rare paintings by Ivan Izhakevych. These may be the only works of the artist to be seen in the United States, perhaps anywhere outside of Ukraine. Dr. Pushkar and his wife owned important art works, both in the Ukrainian fine arts and folk art category. In 1990 he donated a valuable collection of ceramics from Pistyn' and Kosiv, to the Museum, also in the memory of his wife. These donations have a very special significance to the Museum, due to the fact that Mrs. Pushkar has played a role in the history of the institution.

As a community activist, Stefania Pushkar had two vital interest in her life the woman's movement and the arts, to the welfare of which she devoted a great deal of time, expertise and energy. While still in Lviv, she was the cofounder of the popular women's journal "Nova Khata' and the director of the Ukrainske Narodne Mystestvo cooperative. She organized the Ukrainian pavilion at the World's Fair in Chicago in 1932/33, with an exhibition of a collection of Ukrainian folk art. Many decades later this collection, which had been cared for by the Ukrainian National Women's League of America (UNWLA) through the years, became the nucleus of the Folk Art Collection of the Ukrainian Museum in New York City, which was founded by UNWLA in 1976. Stefania Pushkar was also the president of UNWLA from 1966-71 and the co-founder of the World Federation of Ukrainian Women's Organizations.

Blessed Mother
Oleksa Novakivsky (1872-1935)
Blessed Mother with the Child Jesus
paper, ink, pencil
Fine Art Collection of The Ukrainian Museum
Gift from the Estate of Bohdan and Oksana Rak

Guided by their love and appreciation of Ukrainian art, Bohdan and Oksana Rak were able to build an impressive collection of works of noted Ukrainian artists, among them Oleksa Novakivsky, Mykhailo Moroz, Oleksa Hryshchenko, and others twenty six paintings in all. The collection also included a remarkable drawing by Oleksa Novakivsky, which was revealed to be one of a series of sketches that the artist had made for a monumental painting for a church. While both were still alive, Mr. and Mrs. Rak had willed their much prized collection to The Ukrainian Museum, which the Museum received following the death of Mrs. Rak in February this year.

Both Oksana and Bohdan Rak were community activists, and toward that end they gave freely and generously, both their time and financial support. Mr. Rak was the co-organizer of the Ukrainian Sports Federation of the US and Canada, which he headed for several years. He was also the president of the choir Dumka. For many years Oksana Rak was an active member of UNWLA, holding many posts in the organization, among them president of the New York Regional Council during the years 1966-70 and 1974-75.

Both were members of the Museum since 1978 and its generous supporters. When Mr. Bohdan Rak died, his wife opened an Endowment Fund in his name, donating $25,000 to the institution.

On exhibit also are various publications- monographs of the artists.

The Ukrainian Museum is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday, 1 5 PM. Admission is $3.00 for adults, $2.00 for senior citizens and students. Admission for Museum members is free.

For further information, please call the Museum office at (212) 228-0110.

The first exhibition in this series opened in December 1998. It was entitled Alexander Archipenko. Alexis Gritchenko: Graphic Works by Alexander Archipenko and Oil Paintings, Watercolors and Drawings by Alexis Gritchtenko. The works on view were from the collection of Zenon and Olena Feszczak.


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