Maria Prymachenko: An Artist for Our Times
Maria Prymaczenko, Our penguin friends wanted to look at Polesie: How they plow here and how beautifully young people dance, 1989

Maria Prymachenko: An Artist for Our Times

Kacha Szaniawska
time 7 minutes

She is Ukraine’s most famous artist. She painted, drew, decorated ceramics, and embroidered. Her designs have graced postage stamps and coins, and she remains an inspiration to artists and textile designers today. 

The world rediscovered Maria Prymachenko on February 27, 2022, when the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported that Ivankiv Historical and Local History Museum (in Kyiv Oblast) had burned down following a Russian bombardment. Twenty-five of the artist’s works were inside, and local residents managed to rescue some of them. 

Maria Prymachenko was born in 1909 into an artistically talented rural family in the village of Bolotnia. Her mother did embroidery, her father was a carpenter, and her grandmother painted Easter eggs. Just like another outstanding female artist—the surrealist painter Frida Kahlo—Prymachenko suffered from polio as a child, and she also wore long, hand-embroidered skirts to conceal her paralyzed leg. 

She learned to draw, paint, and embroider at home. Even though she never acquired any artistic qualifications and had just four years of primary education, she became a professional embroiderer at


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NADA Villa Warsaw: The Voice of New Art
Full Moon Empty Stomach by Flaviu Cacoveanu, NADA Villa Warsaw

NADA Villa Warsaw: The Voice of New Art

Maria Kozak

It is a great feast for all who are into the biggest names of the art world and the hottest cultural trends: an exhibition of works from forty-four art galleries located in three continents. For five days—May 15 to May 19—an exhibition of contemporary Polish and international art takes place inside the neo-baroque Gawroński’s Villa in Warsaw.

A neon sign hanging from a balcony—Full Moon Empty Stomach by Romanian artist Flaviu Cacoveanu—welcomes guests entering the exhibition. Lying around the garden are aluminum astronauts by Paweł Althamer. Inside the villa, artworks by Weronika Gęsicka, Xawery Wolski, Aleksandra Waliszewska, Yuri Ancarani, Gvantsa Jishkariani, Santiago de Paoli, and Ciprian Mureșan, among others fill the rooms. In the spirit of community and unity, galleries from across the globe joined to present their artworks together in one space.

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