Kateryna Aliinyk

The Action Doesn’t Fit the Plot / 2024 / painting / acrylic on paper (164 × 210 cm)
They Are Meant to Be / 2023 / painting / acrylic on paper (115.5 × 159.5 cm)
We Got Front-Row Tickets / 2023 / painting / acrylic on paper (142 × 177 cm) / courtesy of the artist

Works exhibited in the Trade Fair Palace:

Kateryna Aliinyk, Biennale Matter of Art 2024, National Gallery Prague – Trade Fair Palace (c) Jonáš Verešpej

Kateryna Aliinyk (lives in Kyiv, b. Luhansk (UA), 1998) has been creating paintings and writing about the ongoing Russian invasion in rural Donbas, Ukraine since 2014. She focuses on the changes of the landscape. What happens to the land when people leave and do not take care of it anymore? How do the harmful effects of war mix with the soil? What kind of renewal can we imagine after such destruction? Will hand grenades grow roots like carrots or turnips? How is it possible to create images of a landscape you can’t visit or touch anymore? “In farming areas, landmines, rocket debris, and human remains exist side by side with crops,” the artist says. “This mix reminds us that every battlefield is just a field in the first place. Ukrainians try their best to keep using the land for its original purpose despite everything. But we all worry whether we can eat the harvest. Or have we just lost our appetite? Are the traces on the ground from farming machines or war vehicles?” Kateryna Aliinyk doesn’t show landscapes from a distant, bird’s eye view. Instead, she zooms in on the roots, plants, soil, and war debris. Her paintings allow us to come close, maybe even closer than we would like to be. In the works she shows at Matter of Art, there’s a new element. Theater curtains frame her close-ups of natural environments. The landscape becomes like a stage, where scenes of destruction play out. What does it mean to witness an ongoing war, not just against people, but also against the environment?

From the artist's archive

lives in Kyiv
b. Luhansk (Ukraine), 1998

Kateryna Aliinyk was born in 1998 in Luhansk, Ukraine. Since 2016 she has lived and worked in Kyiv. In 2021 she received her master’s degree in art from the National Academy Of Fine Arts And Architecture in Kyiv. In 2020 she completed a course in contemporary art at the Kyiv Academy of Media Arts as well as the Method Fund’s contemporary arts program Positions of the Artist. Her primary mediums are painting and text. Aliinyk mainly works with the topic of the landscape that has been damaged by the war and occupation. She works through images of nature and non-anthropocentric optics.

She participated in the exhibitions Motherland (2023), EVA International (2023), From Ukraine: Dare to Dream in the World of Constant Fear (2024), Our Years, Our Words, Our Losses, Our Searches, Our Us (2023), and State of Emergence (2022).