MARIA wins top honour at International Book Arsenal Festival in Kyiv

#UWC news
May 27,2019 111

The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) congratulates Canadian artist of Ukrainian descent Lesia Maruschak on winning this year’s top honour at the International Book Arsenal Festival in Kyiv with her artbook – MARIA.

MARIA is one component of a larger multi-media art installation referred to as a Mobile Memorial Space that memorializes the Holodomor, genocide of the Ukrainian people, as inspired by the story of one Holodomor survivor currently living in Canada. In addition to preserving historical memory, Maruschak hopes to encourage dialogue among affected communities on the important global conversation about genocide.

“The Ukrainian World Congress is proud to be a public relations sponsor of Project MARIA and congratulates Lesia on this tremendous achievement,” stated UWC Vice President and Chair of the UWC International Holodomor Coordinating Committee Stefan Romaniw. “We highly encourage the international community to embrace Project MARIA and facilitate its broadest reach with the goal of building the bridges of cross-cultural understanding and dialogue.”

“As a child growing up on the Canadian prairies books were like a magic carpet, taking you to places you could only dream of.  Never did I dream that I would make a book, one that would give voice to the victims of the Holodomor and to my heroine MARIA, and receive an award as important as the Grand Prix. MARIA manifests the support of a community: the publisher, designer, supporters, sponsors, foundations, collectors, libraries, bookstores and readers.  This award belongs to this community!” stated Lesia Maruschak.

The International Book Arsenal Festival, annually organized by Mystetskyi Arsenal in Kyiv, offers the book, literary and artistic collectives to interact with each other, and implement innovative projects.  This year’s Festival, which ran from 22-26 May 2019, explored the theme of living together – intercultural, inter-historical and inter-political relations among neighboring countries. On 12 March 2019, the International Book Arsenal Festival was declared the best literary festival at the London Book Fair International Excellence Awards.


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