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Material Evidence: Ukraine Reacts

October 19, 2014 Written by | No Comments

The ArtBeam gallery in Chelsea last week concluded an amateur photojournalistic exhibit shot from the epicenters of violence across the ocean. Material Evidence. Syria, Ukraine…Who is next curated by a German photojournalist Benjamin Hiller, for four weeks greeted inquisitive Ukrainian immigrants among the New York crowd.

“My first impression was that it seems to be trying to make the ultimate experience with a minimum expenditure of efforts”

-shared a familiar with Ukraine’s events visiting journalist, Dmytro Desiatyruk that reports for Kiev’s local newspaper.

Hiller’s project showcased prior in Russia, Brussels and Berlin, aggregated a gallery of anonymous images to uncover the truth behind debating realities of Syrian civil war and Ukraine’s gruesome revolt captured from Kiev’s Independence Square.

The visitors were invited to contemplate on the next potential civil outbreak through impressionistic visuals from Syria and Ukraine. The  most controversial chapter of the exhibition uses various artifacts and action shots from the heart of Kiev’s Maidan Nezalezhnosti largely focused on the civilian aggression.

Material Evidence Syria, Ukraine...Who's Next?
A protestor in Maidan attacking police. (No author name found)

The images of “Neo-Nazi” rebels and civilian men attacking police with handmade firebombs, bulldozers, and destruction of the military equipment follow a mere representation of the peaceful  capital.

"Neo-Nazi" rebells
“Neo-Nazi” rebells. (No author name found)
Material Evidence Syria, Ukraine...Who's Next?
Right: Center of Kiev prior to beginning of November protests
Left: Kiev’s Aftermath. (No author name found)

The thematic aggression was also portrayed with falls advertisement.  One of the large photographs in the middle of randomly structured  hall, captured a water cannon truck massively used on protestors in the middle of winter– yet captioned the contrary.

Material Evidence Syria, Ukraine...Who's Next ?
In the picture: water cannon truck in Maidan. (No author name found)
material evidence ukraine, syria
Caption under photo with a water cannon truck. (No author name found)

The Syrian  photographic motif contrasts Ukraine’s condemnation of civilian revolutionaries  with an evident mourning of civilian and military fatalities while denouncing the Syrian president. The discerned rawness feel of the civil war in a dingy gallery space carried an empathetic crowd through the  prints of the Damascus war zone; shelled communities, schools and homes.

According to the exhibition’s website, the visuals were gathered by nameless “concerned journalists” willing to risks lives in order to show the “other” side of the truth, they note  mainstream media omits.

Desiatyruk concerned about the authenticity of pictures questioned the integrity of Hiller’s mission to expose the “journalistic truth” of the conflict.

“The organizers pulled from the Internet photos from the winter events in Kiev and Ukraine,” he said. “No one said a word about authorship of printed  images.”

The Ukrainian journalist believes that the whole concept of the project indirectly characterizes the true state of affairs in regard to the vaunted propaganda machine he named Putin.

“The main thing is that this show is not reflecting the real story of the events in Ukraine.”

The guestbook at the end of the tour speaks for itself.  The visitor comments that appreciated the effort truth exposure appeared lost among the inked anger. Many comments exuded strong suspicions of the pro-Russian propaganda.

Material Evidence Syria, Ukraine...Who's Next?
Guestbook shows unambiguous thoughts.

The disclaimer poster above the comments informs the visitors that the gallery didn’t not take sides in the conflict but rather wanted to show world the truth as they saw it.



Categories: material evidence · material evidence syria ukraine · new york · PRO PEACE NY · UA · ukraine