The Russian war against Ukraine has now entered its second year after the beginning of the full-scale invasion of 24 February 2022, upon which urban centres across the country including Kyiv and Kharkiv have been bombarded by shelling and missile strikes. This follows Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea and the support of violent separatists in Ukraine's Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts in 2014. More than 8 million refugees have fled the country, and around a third of the country is displaced.


The invasion of Ukraine has caused the biggest refugee crisis in Europe since the second world war.

Those fleeing from Russian advancement and arriving in the western Ukraine, as well as those still close to the front line are still in urgent need of essentials including food, medical supplies, temporary shelters, and protective equipment. While large organisations are providing support, it is small, often self-organised groups that are making the crucial difference on the ground.


Since the start of the full-scale invasion, we have been working with over 80 of Ukraine's most prominent and leading contemporary artists including Nikita Kadan, Zhanna Kadyrova, Igor Gusev, Lada Nakonechna, Yaroslav Futymskyi, Kateryna Lysovenko, Pavlo Kerestey, Oleg Tistol, Pavlo Makov, and Oleksiy Sai to build an extensive collection of Ukrainian art in the UK. Assembling works created across generations and across time, including as a direct response to the invasion, the collection has become both a kind of war diary and a chronicle of Ukraine's cultural development since independence. We have also been proud to house generous contributions to the collection by contemporary artists from the UK.

We hope to commence a creative dialogue on the issues of war, displacement, imperialism and genocide. How does this war challenge our perceptions (and misperceptions) of Ukrainian identity? Why do cultural heritage and appropriation matter? How have artists shifted their perspectives on their creative processes and what are the strategies for recovery?

The works featured in our collection have been exhibited over the past year in London, Reading and Farnham. In order to raise funds for our initiative, we have been selling works from this collection at fundraising exhibitions and through our website.


We are proud to support Kukhnia, a group of artists and activists supporting refugees displaced withing Ukraine through grassroots organisation. What started as a small project to feed refugees ariving in Lviv station has become a large network of volunteers, whose recent work included building large temporary shelters and bringing supplies to liberated cities such as Bucha and the Chernihiv region, where they are supporting the rebuilding efforts. We are pleased to support this group together with friends in the Netherlands.

To see how your donations are making a difference, please follow our website to stay up to date with the great work done on the ground by Kukhnia. Donations to Artists for Ukraine are essential to help keep groups like Kukhnia helping internally displaced refugees in need. You can donate directly through our homepage and by purchasing an artwork through our shop or in person at one of our exhibitions.


We are a group of Ukrainians and friends of Ukraine in the UK, with connections to grassroots networks such as Kukhnia that support internally displaced refugees. Please reach out to any of us if you would like to find out more about our work and the collection of art that we have assembled.


Susanne Clausen, Artist and Professor of Fine Art at the University of Reading

Pavlo Kerestey, Artist

Uriel Kerestey, BSc Candidate at the London School of Economics

Stéphanie Mitchell, Project Manager and Cultural Consultant

Ollie Musson, Artist

Constance Uzwyshyn, PhD Candidate at the University of Cambridge (Ukrainian Contemporary Art)

Caroline Ingram MBE, Lecturer in Law at the Open University and Enamel Artist