Anastasiia Zhyvkova: The Edges of Gilea

Tasia Zhivkova
© Tasia Zhivkova

The Edges of Gilea, slide show, 2016
The work investigates three natural borders: water, land and light.
Gilea, or the Kinburn Spit, is a thin foreland in southern Ukraine where four ecological corridors intersect: the coast and steppe, the Dnieper, the Buh and the Black Sea.
The Kinburn Spit is the point where unique natural and historical properties coalesce. This is the place that gives the attentive viewer the opportunity to get to grips with the ungraspable. In antiquity, Herodotus situated Hylaia (ancient Greek: "wooded landscape") to the north of the Black Sea and to the east of the Borysthenes (Dnieper). According to Greek myth, Heracles, while searching for his stolen horses, encountered the she-viper, Echidna, who bore him three sons: Agathyrsus, Gelonus and Skythes. The peninsula acquired its current name from the Kinburn Fortress dating back to the sixteenth century (Turkish "Kilburun", English "delicate (narrow) spit", a military installation erected by the  Ottomans to guard the mouth of the Dnieper . Kinburn had been a focal point of the slave trade and was attacked several times during the seventeenth century by Zaporozhian Cossacks, ultimately being assimilated into the Russian empire in 1774. During the Russo–Turkish War of 1787–1792, Kinburn was the primary target for Ottoman troops. The fortress fell in 1855 during the Crimean war. After the war, the fortress was not rebuilt and was ultimately razed in 1857. Today, only earthworks and ditches remain. One of the features of natural beauty on the peninsula takes the form of the Pokrovsky orchid fields, some of the largest in Europe.

Anastasiia (Tasia) Zhyvkova
* 1985 in Kiev, Ukraine
Artist. Author of performances, texts, events, games, works in mixed media. Translator. MA in German language and literature studies, Kyiv Shevchenko University. 2016 Graduate of Science Art Course of New Art School.
Projects and Cooperations: “Not on the Road”, Dip, 2016 Kyiv; “Monument in Progress”, Neuro Matriarchy, New Science Art School, Kharkiv 2016; “Karl and Grani”, Gotland 2015; “One day in Neuroheadset”, Berlin, 2015; “Whitewash”, Nad Bogom Residency Vinnitsa 2015; “Green Tourist”, Korydor Gallery, Uzhhorod 2015; “Our Families”, Fulcrum, Kiev, 2015; “Kantstrasse”, Santiago, Sao Paulo, Kaliningrad, Berlin, 2014; “Circulos”, Santiago, 2014; “Rainbow Kurin”, Gogol Fest and Lgbt Insight, 2013; H4B, Goethe Institute Kyiv 2013.