Padun, Volodymyr and Rozdobud′ko Padun, Li͡udmyla
Volodymyr Padun, a Ukrainian artist born in Dnipro in 1968, graduated from the Dnipro Art School’s Painting Department in 1987. Later, in 1996, he completed his studies at the National Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture, where he specialized in monumental art.
Liudmila Rozdobudko-Padun is a Ukrainian artist and sculptor, born in Yevpatoria in 1971. She graduated from the M. Boychuk Kyiv State Academy of Decorative Arts and Design in 1994, with a specialty in graphic design.
Together, Liudmila and Volodymyr present a unique project called "Antidote," which combines painting, text, poetry, and sound vibrations. According to the artists, "Antidote" explores the thirst for life, fear, and hope. It is an environment where familiar words sound new, where the sounds of yesterday's words are broken down into sound molecules to create new word forms for the future.
Description provided by the artists: "Every person has an event in their life that divides it into before and after. All citizens of our society have received a near-fatal dose of the poison of war. This mental poison causes a headache, haunting everyone like the itch and squeal of a concussion since 2014. This is with them whether they are drinking coffee, petting a cat, raising a child, or reading these lines.
Not only Ukrainians but all of global society now lives in a bipolar state – either on the edge of life and death, or online shopping, with nothing to bridge the divide of this exhausting social schizophrenia. Revealing and demonstrating this bipolar state through artistic means, the "Antidote" project serves as means of locating that life-saving bridge between the two psychological states."
The personal goal of the veteran artist Volodymyr Padun is to demonstrate by his own example that the only way to counteract the poison of post-traumatic syndrome is to create life, and to encourage his audience to realize that, if we understood our history, culture, traditions, achievements, and mistakes better, there would be no need for an antidote to war.
“It is also essential for us to showcase the Ukrainian modern creative interpretation of the war in Ukraine and war as a whole. The main result of the project is the performative space "Antidote," where the viewer is immersed in the atmosphere between war and peace.”
The Antidote project consists of fourteen large-format paintings, an interactive video installation, and a soundtrack. T-shirts with author's prints in collector's editions are also included in the project. At first glance, these are works about a quiet, peaceful life – a blooming cherry, an endless field of cornflowers, a steppe sown with poppies, and dandelions reaching for the sky in the sun's rays. And suddenly – a military drone hovering over daisies, two soldiers taking a selfie in the ripe apricots of the Donetsk region, a thistle at sunset, a bird on a hill of stones and shell casings.
Four of the paintings are the "Embroidery" paintings by Liudmyla Rozdobudko-Padun. Embroidery of any nation is a powerful text, a worldview encoded in symbolic writing, and the knots of these works are formed from letters that compose texts by modern Ukrainian authors who have been touched by the horrors of war. With the help of an innovative artistic tool, the Author "writes" the latest history of the courageous Ukrainian people.
The canvas on which the paintings were created is the pixel camouflage fabric of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. 12 of the canvases are 140 x 200 cm, and 2 are 200 x 420 cm. Oil and acrylic paints are used.