On April 26, 1986, the Chornobyl nuclear disaster occurred in Pripyat, Ukraine. This was the worst nuclear power plant catastrophe in history resulting in tremendous casualties and long term contamination effects that are still reverberating to this day.
In “Chornobyl: Impact & Beyond,” nine artists have created works with a range of subject matter related to Chornobyl before, during and after the incident, as well as its wider impact physically and conceptually. Artists Ricardo Manuel Díaz, Yhelena Hall, Karolina Kowalczyk, Dominic Sansone, Anaïs Tondeur, Jave Yoshimoto, Eden Unluata, Tara Zanzig and Igor Zaytsev hail from many different backgrounds and from all over the world, including Chicago, France and Ukraine. “Chornobyl: Impact & Beyond” will feature works of all media, including paintings and drawings, collage works, street art, living plant life, and an immersive installation performance.
The human toll of the disaster is addressed in Díaz’s metaphorical painting about emptiness and evacuation, Sansone’s multi-headed sculpture referencing the lives lost, and Zanzig’s painting and street art series that depicts the long term effects on those exposed to radiation. Chornobyl’s natural environment is explored in Hall’s sculptural plant installation on the absorption of the manmade by nature, Kowalczyk’s layered work on paper about the impact of radioactivity on flora and fauna, and Tondeur’s photograms that document the invisible scars left upon that which grows in irradiated soil. Zaytsev’s and Yashimoto’s pieces consider the power of creative and destructive forces. Throughout the exhibition, Unluata will be activating a site-specific installation with a Turkish tea ceremony performance addressing the radioactive impact on the tea grown and consumed in nearby Turkey.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website