"Архіви України"
№ 1 (289) / 2014

О. G. Olyinik

"ETERNAL WAY TO TARAS (1814-1861)"

By February 27, 2014 in the exhibition hall of the Central State Archives Museum of Literature and Arts of Ukraine there was held an opening ceremony of the documentary exhibition ‘Eternal Way to Taras (1814-1861)’ dedicated to the 200th birth anniversary of Taras Shevchenko.

The exhibition was organized by the State Archival Service of Ukraine on implementation of the Decree of the President of Ukraine by April 11, 2012 No. 257 “On additional events regarding organization and celebration of the 200th birth anniversary of Taras Shevchenko’ and according to the Plan of Common Events of the State Archival Service of Ukraine and the Federal Archival Agency (Russian Federation) for 2014–2016.

There were exhibited archival documents and materials from the fonds of 25 state archival, museum and scientific institutions of Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Russia and Poland.

The Head of the State Archival Service of Ukraine Olha Hinzburh, the director of the Central State Archives Museum of Literature and Arts of Ukraine Olena Kulchiy, the director of the Central State Historical Archives of Ukraine in Kyiv Ivan Kisil, the director of the Central State CinePhotoPhono Archives of Ukraine named after H. Pshenychnyi Nina Topishko, the deputy director of the Central State CinePhotoPhono Archives of Ukraine named after H. Pshenychnyi Galyna Bozhuk, the director of the Institute of Literature named after Taras Shevchenko at the National Academy of Science of Ukraine Mykola Zhulinskyi, the deputy director of the Institute of Literature named after Taras Shevchenko at the National Academy of Science of Ukraine Sergiy Galchenko, the deputy director of the Institute of Telecommunications and Global Informational Space of the National Academy of Science of Ukraine, dr. Oleksandr Trofimchuk took part in the opening ceremony.

In the opening address Olha Hinzburh pointed the value of the Kobzar’s words for every Ukrainian and the necessity to make conclusions based on his creative heritage.

She stressed that despite the change of format and place of exhibition due to the well-known events in Kyiv, the exhibition "Eternal Way to Taras (1814-1861)" had been opening by February 27 as it was planned. Olha Hinzburh expressed her gratitude to the colleagues archivists whose preparation to the 200th birth anniversary of Taras Shevchenko was of a high level.

In his address the director of the Central State Historical Archives of Ukraine in Kyiv Ivan Kisil highlighted the process of the exhibition organization by the archivists and museum workers who discovered a large array of documents known to a narrow circle of scholars. These documents revealed Shevchenko as a person and enabled to realize the environment which shaped his consciousness as a poet. He pointed the international aspect of the exhibition. In particular, Lithuanian archivists submitted documents regarding Shevchenko’s stay in Vilnius, Polish and Kazakhstan archivists – documents on the commemoration of the poet, and Russian archivists – records regarding his studies in St. Petersburg.

In the welcoming address the academician Mykola Zhulinskyi said about the symbolic meaning of this outstanding figure for Ukraine by calling his works ‘the spiritual relics’. He stressed the necessity to ‘hear Shevchenko’, to discover the boundless world of his creative heritage. Mykola Zhulinsky presented publications of the Institute of Literature of the NAS of Ukraine, dedicated for the 200th birth anniversary of the poet. They were the first three volumes of the Shevchenko’s encyclopedia and facsimile editions of the poet.

Deputy Director of the Institute of Literature Sergiy Galchenko stressed it was very touching that the exhibition was opened in the archives-museum situated on the territory of the St. Sophia Conservation area which preserved fonds of the Shevchenko’ works and where he began his studies of Shevchenko’s heritage.

The director of the Central State Archives Museum of Literature and Arts of Ukraine Olena Kulchiy presented the reference edition ‘Documentary Treasures of Shevchenko Laureates’ prepared by the archives-museum specialists in cooperation with Clio Kyiv Publishing House (within the project ‘Ukrainian Book’). The edition proposed short biographies of 138 famous Ukrainians whose personal fonds were preserved in the TsDAMLM. It also contained rare archival photographs of famous Ukrainian writers, musicians, actors and film directors, titles of books nominated for the Shevchenko award, literature and musical compositions with autographs, sketches and essays etc.

The deputy director of the Institute of Telecommunications and Global Informational Space of the National Academy of Science of Ukraine, dr. Oleksandr Trofimchuk presented the educational Internet-portal ‘Taras Grygorovych Shevchenko’ as a useful resource in the modern Ukrainian informational space.

The exhibition consists of 8 sections. Documents chronologically highlighted stages of life and creative periods of Taras Shevchenko since his birth till the death, and his influence of the development of the Ukrainian culture. The titles of the sections were symbolic representing thoughts of the Bard incarnated on a paper as well as thoughts of other Ukrainian ‘giants of spirit’. They were:

1. “He was a peasant’s son, but became an overlord in the Kingdom of Spirit…” (Ivan Franko). 1814–1831.

2. “It is the greatest happiness to be a free man”. 1831–1843.

3. “There is no other Ukraine in the world, and there is no Dnipro either…”. 1843–1847.

4. “Punished, tortured… but not repent!”. 1847–1857.

5. “Give power to the poor soul so she will fiery talk…”. Shevchenko’s St. Petersburg, 1857–1859.

6. “… To love the truth on earth”. 1859–1861.

7. “That great flame was not stamped out even by death” (Lesya Ukrainka). 1861–1917.

8. “And me in the united family, in the free and new family…”. Taras Shevchenko in literature and arts at the end of ХІХ – beginning of ХХ century.

The catalogue of the exhibition was published at the official web-portal of the State Archival Service of Ukraine.

For the first time there were exhibited materials about Shevchenko’s stay in Vilnius submitted by the state archival institutions of Lithuania1.

One can pay attention to the documents from the fonds of Russian State Historical Archives. It is the selling document issued to Taras Shevchenko by the Kiev province landowner P. V. Engelhardt with the autographs of V. Zhukovsky, K. Briullov and M. Wielhorsky (by 22 April, 1838)2.

The documents of sections highlighting the popularization of the Bard’s works and his commemoration are of great interest. Among these documents there is a poster of an exhibition ‘Nazar Stodolya’ in Radom in 18923, and photo of the Shevchenko’s monument in Fort-Shevchenko (Kazakstan)4.

Among other interesting documents one can find illustrations and depictions for the Kobzar’s poems created by Ukrainian artists I. Izhakevych, O. Bogomazov, O. Khvostenko-Khvostov, K. Piskorskyi, V. Sedliar, O. Ivakhnenko, V. Lopata preserved in the fonds of the TsDAMLM and the Russian State Archives of Literature and Arts.

You can see the documents of the exhibition at the ‘Documentary exhibitions on-line’ section of the official web-portal of the State Archival Service of Ukraine.

During the opening ceremony there were exhibited rare photos of Taras Shevchenko, film chronicles, audio and video materials from the fonds of the Central State CinePhotoPhono Archives of Ukraine named after H. Pshenychnyi

The exhibition was interesting both by its content and mode. For the first time archival documents were presented on the touch screen sponsored by O. Sheremetiev. The new technology enables to zoom documents and scroll an exhibition like a book. Program of virtual tour about the life and work of the great poet was prepared by experts of the Central State Electronic Archives of Ukraine.

Documentary chronicle of the life and work of Taras Shevchenko was complemented by the works from the TsDAMLM fonds of writers P. Zhur, A. Kostenko, R. Lubkivskyi, composers B. Liatoshinskyi, M. Verikivskyi, sculptors I. Kavaleridze, M. Matizer which were inspired by the Bard’s genius.

Hundreds of documents preserved in the personal collections of archives and museum as well as collections of institutions and organizations made up the rich and multi-genre Shevchenko’s heritage. Archives Museum preserves dozens of documents of the Shevchenko’s works studies by prominent Ukrainian scientists and the Ukrainian Diaspora representatives, who devoted their lives to the investigation of certain aspects of the creative heritage, translated the poet’s works in foreign languages and made a significant contribution to preservation of the Shevchenko’s memory.

The exhibition aroused interest in the well-known Shevchenko’s heritage researchers, archivists, museum workers, students and the mass media.

To make your way to discover and understand the figure of Shevchenko, we invite to an exhibition of photographic and archival documents "Eternal Way to Taras (1814-1861)" which will be held in the TSDAMLM of Ukraine (Volodymyrska str. 22a, Kyiv) till May, 2014.

1 State Historical Archives of Lithuania, fond 378, о/о, 1829 р., file. 680, pages 6 back–7; fond 380, series 73, file 168,page 4.

2 Russian State Historical Archives, fond 1341, series 62, file 520, pages 4 і з?. в.

3 State Archives in Radom (Poland),fond 206,file 3638.

4 State Archives of Mangystau Province, file 1628.

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