Famine Ukraine - Painting by Victor Zaretsky
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Painting by Victor Zaretsky

This significant, masterpiece painting symbolizing the 1932-1933 Great Famine In Ukraine was painted by Victor Zaretsky in 1989 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

This is the only painting he ever did on this subject. Victor Zaretsky was born in 1925 in the town of Bilepillya in the Sumy Oblast. He completed the Kyiv Art Institute in 1953 and worked in the area of decorative and monumental paintings. The works of the artist include landscapes, portraits, various subject matter and monumental works that decorate the interiors of museums and private collections both in Ukraine and abroad. Paintings by Zaretsky are sought after by international collectors. The Ukrainian Academy of Art gives and annual Victor Zaretsky Award to the best young artists of Ukraine. Mr. Zaretsky died in 1990 in Kyiv.

(Images taken from the Victor Zaretsky exhibition catalogue. Kyiv, 1991)



The fate of this unordinary artist had been dramatic. His art is not known well enough to the general public. His whole artistic life the artist was working fruitfully and with the inspiration, courageously searching and changing in the realm of painting.

Zaretsky did not follow the beaten track of downplaying personal feelings of a person. Isn't that why Zaretsky's art does not loose its value, its core today, when the lives, words, actions are subject for revaluation. He was one of the few artists who did not have to review the way they created when the time of perestroika came, since he never created to answer the demands of any certain period.

To characterize the art of Viktor Zaretsky as a whole is very difficult, as the body of his work is too rich and diverse. A large number of his works still is not known to the public. The fact that we haven't seen them, as well as many works by other masters has distorted development of our culture and the way we perceive art.

The track that Viktor Zaretsky's talent followed turned out to be unbeaten and winding. The artist followed it with difficulties, but steadily, the obstacles did not stop him for long. He always found the strengths to move on despite anything. A stop for him was equal to death. Zaretsky's artistic nature was wide open to th ewhole diversity of culture both of the past and of the modern times, and was free to use different artistic styles, systems, devices, and means of expression transforming all of this in an original and individual manner.

The strength of spirit and faithfullness to the cause and very important distinctive marks of real talent and highness of fate. And when it was the time to look back, the time to gather stones, it appeared that the tragic losses and suffering did not ruin his personality and became an asset for the artist.


Victor Zaretsky (1925-1990)
(Click on images to enlarge them)

Oil, 1986

Folk Art
(In Memory of Hanna-Sobachko-Shostak)
Oil, tempera, 1988

Paint Me The Blue Bird
Tempera, 1989


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