By Alvin Tsang
The local art gallery is holding a three-week exhibition to show support for Ukraine.
From March 30 to April 17, more than 30 works of art painted by 20 artists will be presented in the exhibition Free Ukraine
Ingrid Hollander, owner of the Orange Art Gallery, was a military engineer for three years.
“I watch the news every night, and what’s happening in Ukraine breaks my heart,” Hollander said. “I never went overseas during my military service, but I helped in other disasters, like the big floods in Manitoba and the ice storm in Ottawa in 1998.”
Hollander and the 20 painters gathered for Free Ukraine are all local artists who care deeply about the greater cause. The idea behind the art exhibition is to do something good, to support Ukraine and to encourage the rest of the world to help too.
“Watching the pictures on television now, and everything about the soldiers and what they are going through, really moves me. I personally understand how terrible war is, and it is heartbreaking,” Hollander said.
Over the three weeks, 20 percent of all gallery sales will be donated to efforts to support Ukrainian refugees coming to Canada.
“Half of the 20% comes from the gallery and the other half comes from the artists themselves, so it’s a shared effort,” Hollander said. “That said, everything else in the gallery, up and down, even if it’s not part of the main exhibit, will also make the 20% revenue.”
the Free Ukraine The exhibition will consist of relevant and significant works, either by color or by subject.
One of the main centerpieces is called The power of yellow and blue by Lorena Ziraldo.
“Heartbreaking photos of men and boys forced into war, at the frontiers turning away from families, are what inspired me to finish this painting,” Ziraldo said. “Yet they leave with hope and pride.”
Another centerpiece is the Rise of the Oligarch by Pamela Cockcroft-Lasserre.
“If you look closely at the clouds in the painting, they suggest the ballet chore, maybe the Bolshoi,” Cockcroft-Lasserre said. “The Oligarch in the flimsy garden chair with his Sotheby’s shopping bag – indicative of his London connections – will eventually fall. All his influence, wealth and possessions, like the chair, will not be able to keep him from descending on earth with a mighty blow.
An opening reception was held Thursday, March 31 from 6-10 p.m. to kick off the three-week event. Hollander spoke to Kitchissippi weather before the big premiere night.
“We’re going to play Ukrainian music, have some special cocktails – everything will be Ukrainian – and I’m going to encourage people to wear blue and yellow at the reception. We’ve installed blue and yellow lights around the main entrance, and we’re dressing up the gallery, inside and out, and doing what we can to show our support for Ukraine.
All profits from the bar on opening night must also be donated.
For more information on Orange Art Gallery and the Free Ukraine exhibition, please visit orangeartgallery.ca