War and its consequences are the central theme in the work of Ukrainian artist Maria Kulikovska. From 27th April to 4th May, daily at noon, 3 pm and 5 pm, she will show her approximately one-hour performance “254” on the steps to the terrace of the Neue Nationalgalerie. The performance first took place in St. Petersburg in 2014 and has renewed relevance against the backdrop of the current war in Ukraine.
Image above: Maria Kulikovska, „254. Action“, Manifesta 10, Eremitage, St. Petersburg, Russland, 1. Juli 2014, Photo: Dana Kosmina
The performance for the New National Gallery is a re-enactment of an unauthorised action that took place on July 1st 2014 during the opening of Manifesta 10 at the Hermitage in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Covered by the Ukrainian flag, Kulikovska lay on the steps of the museum as if wounded. The performance ended with the artist’s brief arrest. The title “254” refers to the number Kulikovska received after the annexation of Crimea in 2014 when she fled to Kiev and became a registered refugee in her own country.
Maria Kulikovska, born 1988 in Kerch, Crimea, Ukraine, is a multimedia artist, architect, actionist performer, researcher and lecturer. She currently lives in Linz, Austria, since she had to leave Kiev in March 2022 after Russia’s invasion. In 2015, the artist founded the international artist group and open feminist platform Flowers of Democracy and in 2017 the School of Political Performance. In 2019, together with Uleg Vinnichenko, she initiated the international non-binary art space GARAGE33 in Kiev, a gallery-shelter for contemporary artists.
The performance “254” in the Neue Nationalgalerie is curated by Klaus Biesenbach, Director of the Neue Nationalgalerie, and Lisa Botti, Curatorial Assistant, and is a cooperation between the Neue Nationalgalerie and Gallery Weekend Berlin to raise funds for Be an Angel e.V. – an organisation that works for the sustainable integration of people with a history of flight.
Wednesday, April 27th – Wednesday, May 4th 2022
Daily at noon, 3 pm and 5 pm
Kulturforum, on the steps to the Neue Nationalgalerie
Potsdamer Straße 50