"After these words she was severely beaten..." – Mariia Kulikovska's MFA exhibition

Date and time
16 March 2020 at 08:30 AM - 29 March 2020 at 05:00 PM
Type of event
Place and route

Vita havet
LM Ericssons väg 14, Stockholm (Look at a map)
Underground station: Telefonplan

The artist-architect, 2nd year student of the master's programme in Fine Art at Konstfack University, Mariia Kulikovska will tell about this amazing life path of one girl X. The exhibition was also created with the help and support of Maria's lover and ally – Uleg Vinnichenko.

"... Girl X was the smallest, most white-skinned and fair-haired child of the third generation of dissident migrants, also she was perfect speaker the language of the colonial occupiers, among all children, living on the nearby streets of an ancient village somewhere on the edge of the Earth. Black-haired Muslim, Roma, Bulgarian, Jewish, Greek, etc. grew up around – children of different nationalities and ethnic groups [more than 40 nationalities lived on the territory of the semi-island of Crimea]. Very often they all ran to the last street of their village, where X and her best friend – the Tatar girl L lived, to play together their favorite game "Sea Worries". On the count of “one, two, three,” while the presenter considered, it was necessary to freeze in some movement, forming with own body a certain form resembling one of the professions: the one whom all these children secretly dreamed of becoming, and the presenter had to guess this profession. X always showed the same thing. She passionately dreamed of remaining an artist, and working as an architect and President of Crimea at the same time. She believed that she could change a lot, so adults will be no longer sad and they will stop leaving their peninsula in search of work. So they finally will not need to pretend and play in the profession of others for the sake of survival, but just remain artists. She sincerely believed that there is only one profession on earth – the artist, and any other profession just a game in "Sea Worries" and the shades of their roles in art. She wanted to draw; design and build an extraordinary paradise future for the entire small peninsula and people who would like to live there.

And then one day, when a whole crowd of kids ran to the street again to play in "Sea Worries", little girl X joined them and again she showed through her body own cherished dream and goal to remain an artist forever and become the President of Crimea. Only now all children laughed at her, that she is stupid and will never become the President of Crimea, simply because Crimea is not a separate country and therefore it is impossible, and no one will ever let her do it, because she is just a girl; and also – the profession of the artist does not exist at all, since the role of the artist is only to draw beautiful pictures and entertain people with them. Girl X sincerely did not understand what they mean and why they were laughing at her and her ideas. She was very upset and started arguing, then convincing everyone around that this was also her “home” and that she would make it the most beautiful, and she would build the most unusual houses for everyone, so people from all over the Planet would come there, watch and admire the wonderful peninsula. And she would create so many sculptures and draw so many beautiful drawings and give them to every resident. So after all of her work small peninsula would become the most cultural place of the world. She sincerely believed that when she became the President of Crimea, everywhere, there would be delicious, affordable water for drinking, roses would bloom and never turn off the lights, and adults would stop cursing and feeling sad for lack of money, work and, sometimes, food. And no one else would leave their houses, and there would be so many children playing on the streets, and everyone would be happy. And then, she would not need to be president anymore, as never would anyone ever need this role, and she would remain just an artist, like all free people around.

After these words she was severely beaten..."

At the exhibition “The President of Crimea, from March 19th, 2014” through metaphors and various visual symbols, the life path of one girl X, born in a fantastic and absolutely unique place – in a forgotten paradise on the Earth's End will be shown. For 32 years of her life, girl X met with many dramas and tragedies, tried to resist the capture and occupation of her beloved semi-island. She met the world of: betrayal and deception of power; hybrid warfare and the hypocrisy of borders; violence and sexual slavery; the substitution of concepts of honor and dignity, sisterhood and solidarity for the sake of a beautiful and false facade in exchange for a sense of permissiveness and total control over the defenseless female body of migrant X; she learned what domestic and gender inequality is in this unjust world; thanks to numerous attempts to escape and immigrate to the “better world”, she met many wonderful people, as well as those who safely parasitized on her meager resources and her complete trust in the world and people; from early childhood, girl X learned what wealth and poverty are, and how the world looks down on those who are at the "economic and political edge of the world"; as an adult, she knew the deepest sense of identity's crisis due to her own bisexuality, as well as she is a native speaker of the invaders of her own homeland; and her salvation from depression and madness from all this "special way" was her art, as for her mother and grandmother, the same eternal migrant women.

And after all these ups and downs, girl X finally met her true love and salvation...

Susanne HelgesonProtected address 0708501540

Department of Fine Art

Updated: 17 March 2020