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Underwater Mosque of Mariupol

60 х 80

acrylic on canvas


The very first word I paid attention to in Mariupol was “Shelter.” It’s written at the railway station, around the city, in the dormitory, where our art residency was located. While reflecting on the notions of the shelter, safety, and intimacy, I focused on the Mariupol sea, which seemed to me very defenseless and disfigured. Azovstal, massive cranes in the port, iron piers, dirty water with the pieces of anthracite, absence of fish and jellyfish. The water of this sea even smells differently. Not like the seawater in the ecologically clean area should smell.

I drew the underwater mosque in the form of a jellyfish, surrounded by the jellyfish, to show the underwater place of safety and protection. The place where we can hide from the dirty water and polluted air. The mosque on the painting peers out of the water, as if inviting to enter the state of calmness and grace. Also, there is a terricone mountain in the background. The rain on the painting symbolizes the tears of the sea, which is crying for its purity and integrity.

Exhibition history:

  • 28 September – 28 October 2019 – Diffusion, the final exhibition of the art residency, Kramatorsk Museum of Art, Kramatorsk, Ukraine

  • 13 – 28 September 2019 – Diffusion, the final exhibition of the art residency Diffusion, Center of modern art by Arkhip Kuindzhi, Mariupol, Ukraine

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