Lilya Chavaga

11.7″x8.3″; embroidery on paper; 2014

Lilya Chavaga
Kiev, Ukraine


Through painting, mixed media and video art, I explore cultural dissonance within the post-Soviet, modern state and its relationship to issues of historical heritage, politics, cultural conflict and interpretational ambiguity.

Combining flat images and historical photographs with textural accents, threads and prints, I strive to underline the rich cultural symbolism and history within the original works, as well as to draw attention to the creation of new meanings through modern interpretation. By underlining the shift in accents and the introduction of present day paradigms, I strive to open up to discussion contemporary phenomena and the idiosyncratic elements within society. Deliberately overlapping symbolic meanings, I explore the fluidity of historic precedence and its symbiotic relationship to past and future.

My artwork not only addresses anthropologic and sociological dimensions, but also delves into the human emotional state through abstract painting. Coloured layers of varying opacity and intensity illustrate the emotional and cognitive landscape of human experience. The pieces I create are essentially an exploration of individual encounters with the self and its history in spheres both public and private.


Lilya Chavaga was born in Ukraine’s Donetsk region. Since 2014, she has been living and working in Kiev. Chavaga holds an MA in Applied Economics from Donetsk National University. She also studied at the Modern Art Research Institute of the Contemporary Art School and at the School of Visual Communication, both in Kiev.

Chavaga’s work has been presented widely in Kiev since 2015, including shows at America House, the Modern Art Research Institute, the “Gogolfest” Art Festival, Arts Council Ukraine, and the Museum of Dreams. In 2015, she also participated in “Feldman Art Park” in Kharkiv.

Her work appeared in the February 2015 edition of Art Ukraine; in the article “Crise ukrainienne, une épreuve de vérité” by Jean-Pierre Chevènement in the June 2015 edition of Le Monde diplomatique; and in an article featured on the website of the School of Visual Communication.


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Family Portrait 1
11.7″x8.3″; paper on paper; 2016

Family Portrait 2
11.7″x8.3″; paper on paper; 2016

8.3″x11.7″; embroidery on paper; 2014

11.7″x8.3″; paper on paper; 2016