On November 1, 2011, Mystetsky Arsenal hosted an opening ceremony of the Sixth Fair-Forum of Contemporary Art, ART-KYIV contemporary. It will be reminded that this is the largest project of the domestic art market, which is being held in the capital for the sixth year in succession. As the head of the Mystetsky Arsenal Natalia Zabolotna noted in her greeting speech, its task is to show high-quality actual Ukrainian art in Ukraine and abroad. The expert noted that at the moment the Ukrainian art is in a vacuum. “We can tell everyone that we are a young state and our art is only developing. But we are 20 years old. And in this period we could have done something essential for our art market,” Zabolotna expressed her indignation. Therefore, she said, in order to support Ukrai-nian art we should create a demand for it, to make the world interested in it. In her opinion, this can be done with the help of interesting events, like ART-KYIV contemporary, which unite Ukrainian and foreign artists on one platform.
Nearly 30 galleries of contemporary art from Ukraine, Russia, Germany, and France presented their items at the ART-KYIV contemporary. The professional selection of the works was performed by an expert council headed by the art expert and curator Oleksandr Soloviov. The gallery representatives admitted that compared with the previous years the level of this year’s fair has essentially grown. Although the participants include galleries that were given the chance to take part in the forum as an advance, so to say, Soloviov noted, there still are many professional works. “This is already a half-European level,” Mykhailo Kulinivets, this year’s art expert of ART-KYIV contemporary from the Dukat Auction House, commented on this year’s forum.
The rest 50 percent that the Ukrainian art platform lacks is the commercial side. For despite the fact that ART-KYIV contemporary is called a fair, the directors of the galleries which are re-gular participants of the project say that the works on display are rarely purchased. One or two sold items are the maximum the gallery happens to achieve for displaying its works at the exhibit, which is not free of charge, by the way. The participants say that this is rather enlightenment patronage, even an image project, but not a commercial one whatsoever.