MISTO DIYA /SOSHENKO 33 – KIEV – UKRAINE
MISTO DIYA /SOSHENKO 33 – KIEV – UKRAINE
Colab Quarter theme: Memory
Values: Freedom of creation
Skills: Network Animation, Training, Artist Residency
Experiences: Reception of artists in post-graduation, resistance action towards a real estate project
Disciplines: Contemporary Art, Architecture
Projects: Collaborative Arts Center
MistoDiya is a Ukrainian organization that works with different actors such as communities, citizens, governments and several experts to do research across the city. Their main objective is to increase the role cities and local communities play in society to meet the needs of local residents, creating conditions in accord to sustainable development of local (and global) communities and their living spaces, building a more civil society.
Its members come from various disciplines and unite in their work architecture, urbanism, art and activism. In his projects and his tasks, MistoDiya practices different methodologies and approaches, such as participatory action research, artistic and urban interventions, educational workshops or collaboratory planning.
The organization was founded in September 2014 with the aim of reflecting the transformations of Ukrainian society after the 2013-2014 Revolution. The Extremely high level of mistrust of institutions in cities has produced a significant rise in political and urban activism, bottom-up initiative approaches and civic awareness. Defending their right to the city, activists fight against illegal construction and privatization territories. They create alternative groups to develop necessary and sufficient reforms for cities, and strive to bring a change to the old institutional and economic system from within.
The process of long-term transformation of government relations and citizens started. However, it is still marked by the high level of mistrust. There is a need to create new bridges between citizens, government, and businesses. MistoDiya believes that the practices of participatory methods are among the most effective for achieving trust between actors for a more just coexistence in the city.
MISTO DIYA WILL ACT ON THE FIELD OF SOSHENKO 33
Soshenko 33 is a postgraduate training venue of the Academy of Fine Arts of Kiev. The building was built after the Second World War – it was intended to become a special villa of suburbs. However, his property has quickly been transferred to the Ukrainian branch of the Soviet Art Fund while it was still under construction. In 1962, the artistic studios of the Soviet Academy of Arts were founded in the building. The studios then formed a separate structure, subordinate to Moscow. Due to different factors, such as a peripheral geographical situation and the difficulty of authorities to exercise control, the Soshenko 33 art studios have become a unique area of freedom as residents of all generations remember, an informal place of communication and realization free from ideological constraints.
After the declaration of sovereignty of Ukraine, the building and the adjacent land have become the property of the National Academy of Art and Architecture. The post-Soviet period saw the emergence of a new artistic community who had to face a major challenge: a project to demolish the building. In 2012, a plan to build a 25-storey building, threatened the studios of disappearance. This illegal building project was stopped thanks to a campaign organized by young artists, the local population as well as activists. This conflict encouraged a more active reflection on defense mechanisms. Of the culture of secrecy that was previously the condition for escaping the controls, the actors moved on to a public demonstration with a communication open to all.
Throughout the 2012 campaign, while fighting illegal construction of the building was at its peak, Soshenko 33 developed several activities that it wishes to perpetuate. It’s in this dynamic that MistoDiya wants to intervene.
Soshenko 33, because of its location, its participants, its relations with its unique neighborhood and history, can become a cultural institution important for Kiev and for Ukraine. With Pylorama’s artists and activists workshops, there is a common desire to set up projects for the future development of the neighborhood, using everyone’s experience through participatory methodologies during the research phase such as that of Implementation. This approach benefits both parties: researchers have the possibility to assemble information for their research and participants become decision makers and take their full part in the project looking for their community. This search will start during dinner events where all the actors mentioned will be invited, in the gardens of Soshenko 33.
This format was chosen because cooking is one of the most simple and understandable activities that has an impact on different cultures. This process immediately creates a warm and relaxed atmosphere and, if the means are implemented, it can create discussions, ideas, and bring information interesting. During these dinners, beyond cooking and tasting, common issues, several topics will be raised which concern the potential and the future of the neighborhood.