Ukrainian flag shone at the NSC of the Chornobyl NPP

On August 23, at night-time, on the occasion of the Ukrainian Flag Day and the Independence Day, the ARTEFACT project made a light installation of a yellow and blue flag on the southern wall of the New Safe Confinement Arch, which is the largest mobile structure in the world, built over the destroyed reactor of the 4th power unit of the Chornobyl NPP.

With the support of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine, State Agency of Ukraine on Exclusion Zone Management, SSE «Chornobyl NPP» and SE «Center for Organizational, Technical and Information Support of Exclusion Zone Management», ARTEFACT artists congratulated the country on this holiday by means of this installation.

In addition to the flag of Ukraine, the flags of 40 Donor Countries and Contributor Countries to the Chornobyl Shelter Found, which took part in NSC construction, flashed on the Arch as a sign of gratitude and respect. It is a massive metal structure 110 meters high and 165 meters long.

Large-scale light installations have appeared not only at the NSC, but also at other buildings of the Exclusion Zone: the Ferris wheel in Pripyat and Hradyr. A series of unique photo and video materials made by the artists will be part of a new ARTEFACT virtual exhibition: CHOrnobyl, supported by the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation, which will be presented in October this year in Madrid at the international media art festival MADATAC.

The event was attended by the Minister of the Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine Roman Abramovsky:

«It is very symbolic that today we are witnessing a patriotic action on the occasion of the State Flag Day and the Independence Day of Ukraine. And although our state is only 29 years old, and the Chornobyl disaster occurred 34 years ago, it was our destiny to overcome its consequences. This matter has unified not only the Ukrainians, but the entire world, because the problem required new, non-standard solutions, which we can only find together. Today, the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone is part of a joint project with the President's Office «Magnets of Ukraine», which will be developed in three directions: tourism, science and investment».

The art event is also an expression of gratitude to the countries that joined the NSC construction, acting head of SAUEZM noted:

«The new safe confinement covered the «Shelter» object above the destroyed 4 power unit. It is the main security building of the Exclusion Zone, and more than 40 states have joined its construction, to which we would like to express our gratitude and respect on the eve of such important holidays for Ukraine. They came to the aid of our independent state in one of the most difficult issues and this support is very important for us», - acting head of SAUEZM Andriy Plyatsko emphasized.

Well-known Ukrainian media artist Valerii Korshunov, the ARTEFACT project author, stressed the importance of artistic rethinking of the Chornobyl accident:

«For the third year in a row, we have been struggling with manipulations and propaganda about Chornobyl, the information catastrophe around it, updating knowledge about the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone. We created this exhibit of the forthcoming exhibition on the night before the holiday to show that the memory of the Chornobyl tragedy is as bright as it was 34 years ago. Projections of the Ukrainian flag to the Arch and to other well-known locations and facilities of the Exclusion Zone also emphasize the importance of change of meaning about Chornobyl from the post-apocalyptic area of the Soviet Union into a zone of cultural and scientific research and innovations. It is extremely important not only to honor the victims, but also to preserve and broadcast our experience to the whole world, realizing what exactly happened in Chornobyl and for what reasons. Chornobyl is an illustrative case for Ukraine, which can contribute to the formation of a new identity of modern Ukrainians and create a positive international image of Ukraine».

The ARTEFACT project with using the modern media art not for the first time attracts attention to Chornobyl in order to rethink it as a national trauma and to form a new modern perception of this accident in Ukraine and in the world, considering it not only as a severe man-made disaster, but also as an informational and social catastrophe in the consequences of which we are living today.

Currently, more than 100 artists are working on a new international exhibition about Chornobyl at the ARTEFACT art residence, with the support of the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation, so that in October everyone from anywhere in the world can visit the exhibition virtually - from their own computer and even smartphone. However, for full immersion, the organizers recommend the use of VR-helmets, because the exhibition will contain modern media art techniques with AR and VR technologies.

The upcoming exhibition ARTEFACT: CHOrnobyl x MADATAC is more than just a reminder of the 35th anniversary. This is a discussion with the world of current issues of ecology, fakes, silence and manipulation with the help of language of modern media art on the example of the Chornobyl disaster, in the aftermath of which we live for the last 34 years. It is the language of modern media art that can interest the younger generation, be understood by the world, demonstrate the relevance and new technologies of Ukrainian art on the way to rethinking its own past and bring Ukrainian culture into world discourse.

The project is implemented with the support and assistance of the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation, the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, the State Agency of Ukraine on Exclusion Zone Management, the National Museum «Chornobyl», IPO European Institute of Chornobyl and IPO «Center».

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