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Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak
The Hiding and Seeking Portrait
2009. Oil, resins on charred wood, 16 x 22 in.
Private Collection, New York

Artworks by Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak

November 1–30, 2020

New York—The Ukrainian Museum is pleased to host the virtual exhibition Holodomor: A Remembrance in commemoration of the 87-year anniversary of the Holodomor Famine-Genocide, which occurred in Ukraine in 1932–33. It is a visual arts presentation featuring the works of Ukrainian-American artist Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak. View the PDF exhibition online.

In 1991, the Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak traveled to Ukraine for the first time. The artist states: "My eyes and soul were opened to a land that was beautiful but ravaged by the Soviet regime. The people were long-suffering yet hopeful – the culture was rich but sabotaged. Years of Soviet oppression had left their mark and were visible everywhere. Mass graves were being uncovered, revealing horrific historical events long denied by the Soviet government." This new knowledge of so many innocent victims did not pull her down into despair but rather created an urgent need to tell their stories – which was also her story.

Developed by Roksolana Karmazyn (Dallas), Chrystia Bryndzia (Houston), Ksenia Rychtycka (Detroit), Anizia Karmazyn (Pittsburgh), and Olya Czerkas (St. Petersburg), the virtual exhibition team worked in collaboration with the artist, who graciously shared her 26 works of mixed-media art to be presented in the exhibition.

The visual arts afford a powerful and palpable lens through which to experience history and the human experience. The artworks featured in the exhibition are striking, compelling and filled with an anguish. "We must look in order to honor the victims and to acknowledge the past so that we can move on," the artist maintains.

Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak is on the Studio School Faculty of the Glassell School of Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Her works can be found in museums and private collections in the USA and Europe.

The exhibition is being hosted virtually throughout the US and beyond during November 2020, the month designated to commemorate the Famine-Genocide. Holodomor means murder by starvation, and is the word used to describe the horror inflicted by Stalin and his government officials on men, women, and children in a deliberate political policy of extermination by starvation. The 1932–33 Holodomor claimed millions of lives in Ukraine.


About the Museum

The Ukrainian Museum acquires, preserves, and exhibits articles of artistic or historic significance to the rich cultural heritage of Ukrainian Americans; its collections include thousands of items of folk art, fine art, and archival material. At its founding in 1976 by the Ukrainian National Womens League of America, the Museum was hailed as one of the finest achievements of Americans of Ukrainian descent. Since then, and particularly since its move in 2005 to a new, state-of-the-art building in Manhattans vibrant East Village, it has become known as one of the most interesting and dynamic smaller museums in New York City. Each year, the Museum organizes several exhibitions, publishes bilingual (English/Ukrainian) catalogues, and presents a wide range of public and educational programs, including concerts, films, lectures, courses, workshops, and special events.

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